“This Running Against the Walls of Our Cage”: Beckett at the Boundary
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This chapter details the role played by the limit and limit-states in Beckett’s later prose, moving from L’Innommable (1953) to the short “residua” gathered in the collections Têtes-mortes (1967) and Foirades/Fizzles (1976), by way of a dialogue between Georges Bataille, Maurice Blanchot and Ludwig Wittgenstein. Lawrence demonstrates how Beckett’s late prose plays at the margins between his fictional and critical aesthetics. The chapter ends by discussing rhetorical and figural tropes which reflect on the status of the image, suggesting that a thematic continuity grounded in the interplay between representation, perception and consciousness underpins the changes in the role played by the visual and figural as Beckett’s prose style developed into the “closed space” genre.