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FAST-FORWARD: Lucky's "Pnigos"

Rosette C. Lamont
Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui
Vol. 11, SAMUEL BECKETT: ENDLESSNESS IN THE YEAR 2000 / SAMUEL BECKETT: FIN SANS FIN EN L'AN 2000 (2001), pp. 131-139
Published by: Brill
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25781363
Page Count: 9
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Abstract

This paper traces a process of evolution that finds its starting point in Lucky's seemingly rambling mock-soliloquy delivered at breakneck speed. This is in fact the Aristophanic 'choker', a patchwork of nonsensical patter. In his later plays Beckett returned twice to this sad clowning: in Play, in which ashes, enclosed in three amphoras, whisper a grotesque summary of their ménage à trois existence, and in the monologue, or should we say pnigos, of a homeless female beggar (Not I). Finally, in the play dedicated to Vaclav Havel, Beckett resorted once again to an ancient Greek form, the end-of-play 'catastrophe', which he turned into its opposite.

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