Samuel Beckett, Claude Simon and the mise en abyme of paradoxical duplication

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2004, 14 pp. 117 - 129
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In his seminal study of novelistic mise en abyme structures, The Mirror in the Text, Lucien Dällenbach identifies a type he calls the mise en abyme of paradoxical duplication. Characterised by an extreme self-reflexivity, Dällenbach explores the operations of this literary trope in the later novels of the nouveau roman, particularly those of Claude Simon and Samuel Beckett. This article explores how Simon and Beckett employ this device with radically different results, Simon's forming part of a textual poetics that engages with the material and social, while Beckett's tends to a privileging of the self-reflexivity of language.
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