Featuring twelve original essays by leading Beckett scholars and media theorists, this book provides the first sustained examination of the relationship between Beckett and media technologies. The chapters analyse the rich variety of technical objects, semiotic arrangements, communication processes and forms of data processing that Beckett’s work so uniquely engages with, as well as those that – in historically changing configurations – determine the continuing performance, the audience reception, and the scholarly study of this work. Greatly enlarging the scope of earlier discussions, the book draws on a variety of innovative theoretical approaches, such as media archaeology, in order to discuss Beckett’s intermedial oeuvre. As such it engages with Beckett as a media artist and examine the way his engagement with media technologies continues to speak to our cultural situation.
The editors would like to thank, first and foremost, the contributors to this volume for their excellent work and for their patient cooperation during the editorial process. The idea for this book can be traced back to the ‘Beckett and the Media’ conference (23–24 March 2018) at the University of Basel, which took place in the framework of the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) project ‘Beckett's Media System: A Comparative Study in Multimediality’ (https://beckett-media.philhist.unibas.ch/en/). Philipp Schweighauser and Balazs Rapcsak gratefully acknowledge the SNSF's support of the research that led to this volume and its generous funding of Open Access publication. We are grateful to Joana Gut and Andrea Wüst for their help in preparing the manuscript for publication, and to Sabina Horber for designing the cover image. Finally, we would like to thank Matthew Frost at Manchester University Press for supporting this project.