SubjectsSubjects(version: 953)
Course, academic year 2023/2024
   Login via CAS
Samuel Beckett: The Plays - AAALC005AE
Title: Samuel Beckett: The Plays
Guaranteed by: Department of Anglophone Literatures and Cultures (21-UALK)
Faculty: Faculty of Arts
Actual: from 2023
Semester: winter
Points: 0
E-Credits: 5
Examination process: winter s.:
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:0/2, Ex [HT]
Capacity: unknown / unknown (unknown)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
Key competences:  
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Is provided by: AAALC005A
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: prof. Mgr. Ondřej Pilný, Ph.D.
Class: Exchange - 09.2 General and Comparative Literature
The course is only open to DALC incoming Erasmus students.

The course is designed as a wide exploration of stage and radio plays written by Beckett from the 1950s to the late 1970s. A central objective is to follow the trajectories taken by recurrent themes in these plays such as voices resounding in the head, fighting back and/or piecing together memories, or the presence of a torturing external gaze. Close attention will be paid to the way in which Beckett often stretches his medium to the utmost limit: it will become manifest how radically Beckett changed the face of modern theatre with his fundamental experiments. The course will combine textual analysis with an examination of the performative aspects of the play text and the specific forms of approaching its audience. Most items will be screened or made available in audio format.

Credit requirements include active in-class participation, a 15-20 min in-class presentation, and a final essay (min. length 3 000 words). Students wishing to be awarded an exam grade in the course are required to submit, in addition to the above, a graded research paper (min. length 5 000 words). Essay topics must be consulted with the instructor in advance. The formal arrangement of essays must follow the Department guidelines (essay-guidelines.pdf ( Deadline for all essays: 18 January 2024.
Last update: Pilný Ondřej, prof. Mgr., Ph.D. (11.09.2023)


Beckett, Samuel. The Complete Dramatic Works. London: Faber and Faber, 1986.

“Three Dialogues by Samuel Beckett and Georges Duthuit.” In Martin Esslin, ed. Samuel Beckett.

A Collection of Critical Essays. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1965. 16-22.

Knowlson, James. Damned to Fame. The Life of Samuel Beckett. London: Bloomsbury, 1996.

Pilling, John, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Beckett. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

van Hulle, Dirk, ed. The New Cambridge Companion to Samuel Beckett. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015.

Ackerley, C.J. and S.E. Gontarski, eds. The Grove Companion to Samuel Beckett. New York: Grove Press, 2004.

Uhlmann, Anthony, ed. Samuel Beckett in Context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

Cohn, Ruby. A Beckett Canon. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2001.

Gontarski, S.E., ed. The Edinburgh Companion to Samuel Beckett and the Arts. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2014.

Haynes, John and James Knowlson. Images of Beckett. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003.

O’Brien, Eoin. The Beckett Country. Samuel Beckett’s Ireland. Dublin: The Black Cat Press/ London: Faber and Faber, 1986.

Last update: Pilný Ondřej, prof. Mgr., Ph.D. (11.09.2023)


2 Oct               Introduction

9 Oct               Endgame

16 Oct              Happy Days

23 Oct              All That Fall

30 Oct              Krapp’s Last Tape

6 Nov              Words and Music

13 Nov             Cascando

20 Nov             Play

27 Nov             Not I

4 Dec               That Time

11 Dec             Footfalls

18 Dec             A Piece of Monologue

8 Jan                Final screening

Last update: Pilný Ondřej, prof. Mgr., Ph.D. (11.09.2023)
Charles University | Information system of Charles University |