Editing Beckett's Twin Texts
Faculty of Arts. Linguistics and Literature
Journal of Beckett studies. - London
, p. 1-17
University of Antwerp
This article tries to envision and assess the feasibility of a critical multilingual edition of Beckett's works, against the background of both traditional editorial theory and new developments in the field. In the case of Beckett's theatrical work, he kept revising his texts in performance. German editorial practice in particular has offered several examples of dealing with this kind of variance, reflecting the author's multiple and changing intentions over time in a critical edition. The situation becomes more complex in Beckett's case due to the multilingual aspect of his work. One way to reflect the multiplicity of Beckett's texts would be to present them as both product and process, in the form of critical multilingual editions with revision narratives connected to, and informed by, the Beckett Digital Manuscript Project (www.beckettarchive.org). In this way, the various versions of Beckett's work are not reduced to a critical apparatus but exist alongside the critically edited twin texts, calling the readers' attention to crucial points of textual variation, rather than smoothing them out.