passivity in waiting for godot and endgame: a psychoanalytic reading

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this study intends to investigate samuel beckett’s waiting for godot and endgame under the lacanian psychoanalysis. it begins by explaining the most important concepts of lacanian psychoanalysis. the beckettian characters are studied regarding their state of unconscious, and not the state of consciousness as is common in most beckett studies. according to lacan, language plays the sole role in creating the subject and his unconscious. beckett’s writing is marked with his exploitation of language with its strength and failure. language, in form of speech, gives beckett’s characters the illusion that it produces meaning for them, that it stands as a symmetry in their infinite world of nothingness and helps them to cover over their anxieties by deferring the object of desire they are after. a great part of lacan’s psychoanalysis deals with the idea of subject’s identification through the imaginary and symbolic orders. his theory of drives and their repetitive cycle around the object of desire, and also the desire of human beings for recognition and the dialectic of master and slave are contiguous with the idea of desiring and waiting for godot. in the same context, lacan introduces jouissance as sought for in the functioning of the drives. most important is his concept of the jouissance of the other through which the subject looks for a once-and-for-all satisfaction of his desire. lacan translates this search as a desire for the lost thing, the primordial desire for the mother; since in his view the desires remain unsatisfied he sees every drive toward jouissance a death drive. this study intends to draw parallels between these concepts and the ideas of silence, death, desire of godot, and passivity in beckett’s two dramas.

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وزارت علوم، تحقیقات و فناوری - دانشگاه شهید چمران اهواز - دانشکده ادبیات و علوم انسانی

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