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<![CDATA[ the dissolution of the subject, the disintegration of the body, the minorization of politics, and the shattering of language. These themes are repeated over and over in Deleuze’s philosophy. Therefore, according to these issues, the footsteps of Deleuze can be seen in Beckett’s characters.
One wants to represent the dissolution of the subject in Not I based on Deleuze’s philosophy. As a matter of fact, in such a chaotic world, the status of the individual changes as well: the monadology becomes a nomadology instead of a certain number of predicates being excluded by a thing by virtue of the identity of its concept, each thing is open to the infinity of singularities through which it passes, and at the same time it loses its center, that is to say, its identity as a concept and a self. An individual is a multiplicity, the actualization of a set of virtual singularities that function together, that enter into symbiosis, that attain a certain consistency. Deleuze calls schizophrenization is a limited process in which the identity of the individual is dissolved and passes entirely into the virtual chaos of included disjunctions. The schizophrenic quickly shifts from one singularity to another, never explaining events in the same genealogy, never taking on the same identity. For example the woman in Not I always mentions she instead of I and that can indicate the negation of herself as being and she found herself in the:
. . what? . . who? . . no! . . she! . . [Pause and movement 1.] . . . found herself in the dark . . . and if not exactly . . . insentient . . . insentient . . . for she could still hear the buzzing . . . so-called . . . in the ears . . . and a ray of light came and went . . . came and went (789).
In fact, Beckett situates his characters entirely in the domain of the virtual or the possible; rather than trying to realize a possibility, they remain within the domain of the possible and attempt to exhaust logically the whole of the possible, passing through all the series and permutations of its included disjunctions in the process. And also, they exhaust themselves physiologically losing their names, their memory and their purpose in a fantastic decomposition of the self. The self is not defined by its identity but by a process of becoming. The same point of view can be seen in Not I when the name of the woman is not mentioned and the subject pronoun is SHE instead of I
and she found herself in the–– . . . what? . . who? . . no! . . she! . . [Pause and movement 1.] . . . found herself in the dark . . . and if not exactly . . . insentient . . . insentient . . . for she could still hear the buzzing . . . so-called . . . in the ears . . . and a ray of light came and went . . . came and went. ,
I would like to argue that in general the play is the bombard of disconnected thoughts and memories that refer to her tough life. It is noteworthy that she does not mention anything about her purpose in telling these disconnected words. Now we can easily observe the process of nothingness and negation of her ego when she comes to the world of becoming word and silence. Deleuze analyzes this concept in a long and complex chapter of A Thousand Plautea. The notion of becoming does not simply refer to the fact that the self does not have a static being and is in constant flux. More precisely, it refers to an objective zone of indistinction or indiscernibility that always exists between any two multiplicities, a zone that immediately precedes their respective natural differentiation. A multiplicity is defined not by its center but by the limits and borders where it enters into relation with other multiplicities and changes nature, transforms itself, and follows a line of flight. The self is a threshold, a door, a becoming between two multiplicities.
The relation between she and words is neither an limitation or mimesis nor a lived sympathy, nor even an imaginary identification. Rather, she becomes word and silence, she enters a zone of indiscernibility where she can no longer distinguish herself from word and silence. In a becoming, one term does not become another, rather each term encounters the other, and the becoming is something between the two, outside the two. This something is what Deleuze calls a pure affect which is irreducible to the affections or perceptions of a subject. Indeed, affects are not feelings, they are becomings that go beyond those who live through them (they become other). In Not I, she loses her texture as a subject in favor of an infinitely proliferating patchwork of affects and percepts that escape her form , as one sees that she is just a mouth. Gradually, she passes into the words like a knife through everything to the point where she herself becomes imperceptible. In short, she is no longer a person but a becoming. The word as a percept and what the percept makes visible are the invisible forces that populate the universe, that affect us and make us become. As Deleuze and Guattari put it “we are not in the world, we become with the world”(Anti-Oedipus 89).
For Deleuze, it is only by passing through the “death of the subject” that one can achieve a true individuality and acquire a proper name. It is a strange business, speaking for yourself, in your own name, becoming it does not at all come with seeing yourself as an ego or a person or a subject. Individuals find a real name for themselves only through the harshest exercise in depersonalization by opening themselves to the multiplicities everywhere within them, to the intensity running through them, experimentation on our self is our only identity. In fact the basic thing for having identity is having name, without name identity ends up nowhere. Thus, the same thing is detectable in Not I where the woman does not have any specific name and identity. Besides she ignores to use the pronoun I
and she found herself in the–– . . . what? . . who? . . no! . . she! . . [Pause and movement 1.] . . . found herself in the dark . . . and if not exactly . . . insentient . . . insentient . . . for she could still hear the buzzing . . . so-called . . . in the ears . . . and a ray of light came and went . . . came and went (789)
and only uses she over and over, a textual hint that can accentuate her negation of identity.
It is generally acknowledged that Endgame originated in Beckett’s mind in 1953 to 1954 and was written in French between 1955 and 1956. This well known play is one of the most controversial plays, and it is perhaps favored by Beckett’s critics as well as himself, and many have written very well on it. Knowing that it is awkward, or maybe impossible, to explicate Endgame, still lends itself to further analysis because of some reasons: First of all, Endgame’s thematic undertow is about the insistent obsession with dying or ending, which is the basic anguish of man related to his condition. Moreover, Beckett’s characters in this play do not employ sufficient language; and therefore, their dialogues always depend on what has already been uttered for a meaningful sense of wholeness. As a combination of these characteristics and the pessimistically-drawn picture in terms of both the characters and the language, it offers no more than nothing to its readers and spectators.
Samuel Beckett in Endgame primarily focuses on the importance of depicting an existence with few words in an era when the importance of existence is incessantly challenged by the recognition that man’s life can end anytime, which means the lives of men are mere insignificant no-thing-nesses. Although it includes comic elements, what Beckett shows the audience is that the play is parodying a residual quest for meaning with ruthless glimpses of ‘nothingness’ beyond the surface puppetry. Besides, this play is an example of the Beckettian universe in which the characters take refuge in repet
ition, repeating their own actions and words and often those of others in order to pass the time. It is necessarily required that Beckett should have some means to convey his hell to the audience, and to force everyone to reckon his own existence and the meaning of life while watching and being exposed to the cruel and irritating situation. Some of those means can be setting, time, situation, and primarily the characters and the language, which are the elements used by the playwright to bring about the harmony of nothingness to Endgame.
۴٫۱٫۱ Endgame and Language 1
Reading a text is never an act of interpretation, it is never a scholarly exercise in search of what is signified, still less a highly textual exercise in search of signifier; rather it is an act of experimentation a productive use of the literary machine, a schizoid exercise that extracts from the text its revolutionary force. In fact, it is the writer who becomes a stutterer in language. So the writer makes language as such stutter, an affective and intensive language and no longer an affection of the one who speaks. In fact, for reading a text is never a scholarly exercise in search of what is signified, still less a highly textual exercise in search of a signifier. Rather it is a productive use of the literary machine, a montage of desiring-machines, a schizoid exercise that extracts from the text its revolutionary force. As for ideology, it is the most confused notion because it keeps us from seizing the relationship of the literary machine with a field of production, and the moment when the emitted sign breaks through this “form of the content” that was attempting to maintain the sign within the order of the signifier. Yet it has been a long time how an author is great because he cannot prevent himself from tracing flows and causing them to circulate, flows that split asunder the catholic and despotic signifier of his work, and that necessarily nourish a revolutionary machine on the horizon. That is what style]]>