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Samuel Beckett and the Primacy of Love$
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John Keller

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780719063121

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719063121.001.0001

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The dispeopled kingdom: the hidden self in Beckett's short fiction

The dispeopled kingdom: the hidden self in Beckett's short fiction

(p.172) 5 The dispeopled kingdom: the hidden self in Beckett's short fiction
Samuel Beckett and the Primacy of Love

John Robert Keller

Manchester University Press

This chapter discusses first-person short fiction. It studies the primal splits within the narrative-self in the direct fiction, as well as those in the ‘created’ tales of the narrator. It starts with a section on the split of the primary nursing bond in the Nouvelles and in the Texts for Nothing. It is followed by a discussion of the central feeling-states found within the Nouvelles and how the narrator experiences aspects of the self as threatening or even hostile, as stated in Texts for Nothing. This chapter also aims to explain the hidden and unfulfilled sense of the narrative self. It also examines the use of projective identification and the splitting of the narrative-self in ‘The Lost Ones’.

Keywords:   short fiction, first-person, narrative-self, primal splits, nursing bond, Nouvelles, Texts for Nothing, feeling-states, aspects of the self, projective identification

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