Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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Share your Thoughts

Why should we read Beckett?

What is your favorite work by Beckett and why?

How has Beckett's writing influenced you?

What questions about Beckett and his work do you think still need to be answered?


Roger Boylan - Beckett's influence on my novel "Killoyle"
No Beckett, no "Killoyle."

I could also say "Know Beckett, Know Killoyle."

Michael from Madrid
Beckett's writing is a thing of beauty and being exposed to beauty makes living more enjoyable, more fulfilling. The subject matter of his work is dark but the words are beautiful and the images from his plays stay with you and you want more.

His writing has made life more enjoyable for me!

There is meaningless and despair, hopelessness, ugliness. His plays are about loss and losing, as well as monotony, repetition and gloom. But the words are poetry, melody, beauty. It's a paradox that we cannot escape from. There is no reason to look for the "core" in Beckett's work. They are the core. There will always be suffering, there will always be hope. Neither can end. Its devastating, and so, so beautiful.

Beckett has confirmed my own hard-won belief that human suffering arises from attachment to things that are impermanent, including one's idea of an unchanging self; that happiness ultimately springs from an emptiness that is paradoxically all-inclusive, and lacking nothing. He transforms this apparent poverty of existence into lyrical substance and beauty with the conviction of Dante and the passion of Thomas Merton.