Endgame Questions and Answers
by Samuel Beckett

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What are the structure, themes, thoughts, setting, and diction of Endgame by Samuel Beckett?

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Lawrence Rodman eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Beckett wrote his plays in French and then translated his own work into English; that might partially explain the eccentricity of his dialogue. In attempting to verbalize the Beckett-ian system, or rhetorical context of his work, the reader should start with existentialism. More specifically, I think Beckett is saying that the devices of civilization have proven to be meaningless, and this determines how estranged or interdependent people have become in response, acting out their anachronistic social roles to create a solid existence from nothingness.

The setting is a room. The quartet of characters, Hamm and Clov, and Hamm's parents, are each impaired or paralyzed and live further compartmentalized existences. Master and servant do everything they can to function within their biodome-like isolation. Their conversation is clipped, rendered into shorthand, things already said, repeated in a ritualistic loop. They're a bickering duo, as if they are former WWI soldiers, forgotten in their...

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Matthew Sykes eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Meg Eubank, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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bookM.A. from Arcadia University


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