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A text become provisional: revisiting the capital of the ruins

Davies, W. (2017) A text become provisional: revisiting the capital of the ruins. Journal of Beckett Studies, 26 (2). pp. 169-187. ISSN 1759-7811

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To link to this item DOI: 10.3366/jobs.2017.0201


This essay is a reexamination of Samuel Beckett's The Capital of the Ruins, the untransmitted radio script written for Raidió Éireann (now Raidió Teilifís Éireann) in 1946 following his work with the Irish Red Cross in Saint Lô. The first half of this essay is concerned with the archival and publishing history of the text. This section examines the variants introduced by various editors or publishers and makes a case for a definitive edition of the text based on the edited photocopy of the typescript held in the Beckett International Foundation archive at the University of Reading. The second half of this essay then uses this close attention to the text to reconsider the focus of The Capital of the Ruins and the extent to which the piece is more firmly directed towards socio-political aspects of post-neutrality Ireland than has previously been identified.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Samuel Beckett Research Centre
Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > English Literature
ID Code:85384
Publisher:Edinburgh University Press


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