On Silence pp 57-82 | Cite as

Silence as Practice

  • Ed Pluth
  • Cindy Zeiher
Part of the The Palgrave Lacan Series book series (PALS)


This chapter looks at the ‘writing’ and portrayal of silence in literature and music. We closely consider Beckett, Melville and Claudel as well as John Cage’s infamous silent composition, 4′33″ as varying ways in which silence is invoked and grappled with.


Lacan Cage (John) Beckett Melville Claudel Active silence Literary silence tacere silere Speechlessness Jankélévitch Unsayability Drive Anxiety 4′33″ The Calmative Bartleby The Hostage 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ed Pluth
    • 1
  • Cindy Zeiher
    • 2
  1. 1.California State University, ChicoChicoUSA
  2. 2.University of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand

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