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B Effects: Bonds of Form and Time in Barthes, Blanchot and Beckett

B Effects: Bonds of Form and Time in Barthes, Blanchot and Beckett Starting from Nicholas Zurbrugg’s dismissal of the negative ‘B-Effect’ in postmodernism, which he associates with ‘Benjamin, Brecht, Beckett, Barthes, Baudrillard, and Bourdieu’, this essay examines the common rationale behind convergent affirmations of a neutrality or minimalism, often mistaken for nihilism, at key junctures in the works of Samuel Beckett and Roland Barthes, adding Maurice Blanchot as a critical link. The argument unfolds along a double axis: it first considers the formal role of ‘chatter’ or ‘idle speech’ and the fragment(ary in writing) in the three ‘B-writers’ before relating them to different constructions of temporality, such as the ‘future anterior’ and the après-coup, in their thematizations of ‘catastrophe’ and ‘disaster’ as indirect responses to personal or historical trauma and death. A brief concluding paragraph highlights how time’s suspensiveness leads to different forms of waiting across Barthes, Blanchot and Beckett. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Paragraph Edinburgh University Press

B Effects: Bonds of Form and Time in Barthes, Blanchot and Beckett

Paragraph , Volume 45 (2): 15 – Jul 1, 2022

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
0264-8334
eISSN
1750-0176
DOI
10.3366/para.2022.0394
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Starting from Nicholas Zurbrugg’s dismissal of the negative ‘B-Effect’ in postmodernism, which he associates with ‘Benjamin, Brecht, Beckett, Barthes, Baudrillard, and Bourdieu’, this essay examines the common rationale behind convergent affirmations of a neutrality or minimalism, often mistaken for nihilism, at key junctures in the works of Samuel Beckett and Roland Barthes, adding Maurice Blanchot as a critical link. The argument unfolds along a double axis: it first considers the formal role of ‘chatter’ or ‘idle speech’ and the fragment(ary in writing) in the three ‘B-writers’ before relating them to different constructions of temporality, such as the ‘future anterior’ and the après-coup, in their thematizations of ‘catastrophe’ and ‘disaster’ as indirect responses to personal or historical trauma and death. A brief concluding paragraph highlights how time’s suspensiveness leads to different forms of waiting across Barthes, Blanchot and Beckett.

Journal

ParagraphEdinburgh University Press

Published: Jul 1, 2022

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