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Watt (Jupiter books-no.2)

3.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 255 pages
  • Publisher: Calder (1963)
  • ASIN: B001A9MBMA
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
To respond to the reviewer who thinks Watt is a load of rubbish, even if you don't understand the themes and literary devices, I fail to see how you could not find this book just incredibly funny. I love much of Beckett's work for the former reason, but the latter is what makes this my most-read book on my shelf. Not as deep, poetic, symbolic or clever as The Trilogy or Endgame, but it's just an utter joy to read. Love it.
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Format: Paperback
In Watt the third person narration Beckett uses shares an uncomfortable relationship to the characters of the story. It is based either on anonymity or antagonism. This is different from the common intimate relation that the narrators of fiction share with the characters they tell us about. The result of Beckett's writing technique is that the reader can get no sense of a total picture or a comprehensive truth of the character's reality. The narrator is just as curious and confused by the nature of reality in the fictional world as the characters. In the first half of ¡®Watt¡¯ the narrator shows an estrangement from Watt equal to that which Watt shows toward himself. This is not the unreliable narrator of traditional fiction, but a narrator whose ignorance is a cause of the technique of telling which seeks to provide a total viewpoint of reality. The narrator of Watt, rather than assuming the position of a narrator who is a guide through the tale, functions as an unnecessary intermediary between the characters and their search for an understanding of reality. Who else but Watt can effectively relate the experience of his being? Consider Lawrence Harvey¡¯s point in his essay on Watt, "He [Watt] becomes a storyteller, but one who by this time is so convinced of the inadequacy of ordinary language that he feels compelled to invent verbal structures that are more closely related to his experience.¡± Watt himself is dissatisfied with the way the narrator is telling the story in the first half of the novel and so tells in his own unique mode of expression his story to Sam who acts as an interpreter. This points to a growing dissatisfaction with language as a way of telling in the text and debunks the impossible power of the third person narrator.Read more ›
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read several editions of Watt in English over many years, but this edition is as good as it gets. The book should appeal to anyone who can read, but will frighten off the faint-hearted after Watt himself enter the story. My advice? Stay with it - you will emerge a wiser and better person. Every few years I re-read it for the joy of its comedy.

Peter Jull
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