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THE IDEA OF ABSURDITY REFLECTED IN THE

CHARACTERIZATION OF CHARACTERS IN SAMUEL

BECKETT’S ENDGAME

AN UNDERGRADUATE THESIS

  

Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements

for the Degree of Sarjana Sastra

in English Letters

  

By

ARMANDO SORIANO

  

Student Number: 034214123

ENGLISH LETTERS STUDY PROGRAMME

DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH LETTERS

FACULTY OF LETTERS

SANATA DHARMA UNIVERSITY

YOGYAKARTA

  

2009

  

THE IDEA OF ABSURDITY REFLECTED IN THE

CHARACTERIZATION OF CHARACTERS IN SAMUEL

BECKETT’S ENDGAME

AN UNDERGRADUATE THESIS

  

Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements

for the Degree of Sarjana Sastra

in English Letters

  

By

ARMANDO SORIANO

  

Student Number: 034214123

ENGLISH LETTERS STUDY PROGRAMME

DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH LETTERS

FACULTY OF LETTERS

SANATA DHARMA UNIVERSITY

YOGYAKARTA

  

2009

  For my beloved Grandfathers,

Armando Soriano and Semuel Laikopan

.

  

AKNOWLEDGEMENTS

  This Undergraduate Thesis had been improved by the help, support, and assistance of some people, who with their kindness, have been generous enough to be involved during the process of writing this thesis.

  In this opportunity, I must thank Drs. Hirmawan Wijanarka, M.Hum.,my advisor, for his patience in guiding me writing this thesis, and for the suggestions that are really valuable. I thank Dewi Widyastuti, S.Pd.,M.Hum. ,my co-advisor, for the consultation, and Dr. Harry Susanto, S.J. for providing me the discussion and a lot of second opinions.

  I thank God for His blessing and guidance. My sincere gratitude goes to my family, Bapa, Mama, IyOo, and the big family of Soriano and Laikopan, for the endless praying and support. I also thank my colleagues in KKN-XXXII- Kelompok 21 for the friendship, my companions in Media Sastra Community, and Sastra Mungil for the process, discussion, and help. I thank the buddies, Anton “ktx”, Vino Alberto, Nicodemus and Jonathan Martumpal for the different but inspirational perspective. A special thank goes to Guruh ‘Iyan-ahong’ and Fr. Evencio, OFM for providing me those rare books and also to all compatriots in those melanesian students communities for the solidarity.

  Armando Soriano

  TABLE OF CONTENTS TITLE PAGE ……………………………………………………………………. i APPROVAL PAGE

  …………………………………………………….……….. ii

  ACCEPTANCE PAGE

  …………………………………………………………….. iii

  

LEMBAR PERNYATAAN ……………………………………………………….. iv

MOTTO PAGE

  ……………………………………………………………………. v

  

DEDICATION PAGE ……………………………………………………………. vi

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

  …………………………………………………….. vii

  

TABLE OF CONTENTS ………………………………………………………… viii

ABSTRACT

  ………………………………………………………………………. ix

  ABSTRAK

  ……………………………………………………………………….. x

  CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION

  …………………………………………….... 1

  A. Background of the Study ……………………………………………... 1

  B. Problem Formulation ………………………………………………… 4

  C. Objectives of the Study ……………………………………………….. 4

  D. Definition of Terms …………………………………………………… 4

  CHAPTER II: THEORETICAL REVIEW ……………………………………... 6 A. Review of Related Studies……………………………………………… 6 B. Review of Related Theories……………………………………………. 17 C. Theoretical Framework…………………………………………………. 24 CHAPTER III: METHODOLOGY

  ……………………………………………. 26

  A. Object of the Study …………………………………………………… 26

  B. Approach of the Study …………………………………………………. 27

  C. Method of the Study …………………………………………………… 27

  CHAPTER IV: ANALYSIS ……………………………………………………..

  30 A. Characterization of Characters in Endgame …….……………………... 31

  B. The Idea of Absurdity Reflected in the Characterization of Characters in Endgame …………................................................................................

  48

  1. The Routine ……………………………………………………

  49 2. Meaningless Condition ………………………………………..

  53 3. The End ……………………………………………………......

  57 CHAPTER V: CONCLUSION ………………………………………………….

  61 BIBLIOGRAPHY ………………………………………………………………... 65

  ABSTRACT

  ARMANDO SORIANO. The Idea of Absurdity Reflected in the Characterization of Characters in Samuel Beckett’s Endgame.

  Yogyakarta: Departement of English Letters, Faculty of Letters, Sanata Dharma University, 2009.

  Endgame is a play with the theme of a criticism on human’s existence.

  The author, Samuel Beckett, is known as a dramatist who brings a new atmosphere to the field of theatre. The characters can be analyzed in their characterization to find a condition that criticizes the existence of human. The criticism can be seen in the idea of absurdity about human life that is reflected on the characters. The analysis on the characterization of the characters and its reflection of the idea of absurdity is the main goal to discuss in this study.

  This study firstly tries to find out the characterization of the Clov, Hamm, Nagg, and Nell and the way it reflected the idea of absurdity. The play is containing a criticism or moreover can be said as an idea which is aimed to a reader. For this reason the writer choose to apply moral- philosophical approach in the study. The writer used the method of library research in collecting data and several processes that can be classified as reading data, analyzing data, and drawing conclusion.

  Absurdity is philosophical idea raised by Albert Camus. It is a study that explores the reality of human life. One of the conclusions on this idea is that absurdity is the ultimate truth. Absurdity, according to Camus, cannot be explored thoroughly. It can only be identified by using the scheme of the explanation of idea of absurdity. The characters in the play trough their actions, speeches, and thinking, reflect some themes. These themes are the routine, meaningless condition, and the end. These themes, based on the Camus’ philosophy of absurdity, can be categorized as the reflection of the idea of absurdity. The criticism on the human existence that is raised by the author through the play can be seen by using the scope of Camus’ idea of absurdity as the characterization of characters shows the reflection of the idea of absurdity.

  .

  ABSTRAK The Idea of Absurdity Reflected in the ARMANDO SORIANO. Characterization of Characters in Samuel Beckett’s Endgame.

  Yogyakarta: Departement of English Letters, Faculty of Letters, Sanata Dharma University, 2009.

  Endgame

  adalah naskah drama dengan tema mengenai kritik atas keberadaan manusia. Penulisnya Samuel Beckett, dikenal sebagai dramawan yang membawa nuansa baru dalam dunia teater. Tokoh-tokoh dalam drama ini dapat dianalisa berdasarkan penokohan mereka untuk menemukan kondisi yang mengkritik keberadaan manusia. Kritik ini dapat dilihat pada ide mengenai absurditas kehidupan manusia yang terefleksi oleh tokoh- tokoh dalam drama ini. Analisa mengenai penokohan tokoh Clov, Hamm, Nagg, dan Nell dan cara penokohan tersebut merefleksikan ide absurditas merupakan tujuan utama untuk dibahas di dalam studi ini.

  Studi ini pertama-tama akan mencoba memaparkan penokohan dari Clov,Hamm,Nagg dan Nell dan cara penokohan tersebut merefleksikan ide absurditas.

  Drama ini berisikan kritik yang dapat dikatakan sebagai ide yang diarahkan kepada pembaca. Berdasarkan alasan ini penulis memilih untuk menerapkan pendekatan moral-filosofis di dalam studi ini. Penulis menggunakan metode studi pustaka dalam mengumpulkan data dan beberapa proses yang dapat dijabarkan seperti membaca data, menganalisa data, dan menarik kesimpulan.

  Absurditas adalah ide filosofis yang diungkapkan oleh Albert Camus. Ide ini adalah studi yang menjelajahi kenyataan dalam kehidupan manusia. Salah satu kesimpulan mengenai ide ini adalah bahwa absurditas adalah kebenaran mutlak. Absurditas menurut Camus tidak dapat dijelajahi secara tuntas. Ide ini hanya dapat dipelajari dengan menggunakan skema penjelasan tentang ide absurditas. Tokoh-tokoh di dalam Endgame melalui tindakannya, perkataannya, dan pemikirannya merefleksikan tema-tema tertentu. Tema-tema itu adalah rutinitas, kondisi ketiadaan makna, dan akhir. Tema-tema tersebut berdasarkan filsafat absurditas menurut Albert Camus dapat di kategorikan sebagai refleksi dari absurditas. Kritik atas keberadaan manusia yang diungkapkan oleh penulis naskah di dalam drama tersebut dapat dilihat dengan menggunakan pemahaman filsafat dari Camus di mana penokohan dari para tokohnya menunjukan refleksi dari ide tentang absurditas.

CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION A. Background of the Study The routine of human life has been an object of analysis and discussion by

  

many of the existentialism thinkers or philosophers. One among others is Albert

Camus who uses this routine as an element in his work. Another person, Samuel

Beckett, who is known more as a dramatist, also has used the theme of the routine

of human life. He stated that habit and routine were the "cancer of time”

(http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1969/press.html, accessed

th

on October 11 , 2007). This theme can be said as a point where the discussion of

the absurdity can be started.

  In Endgame, the habit or the routine that the character has can be said as

one of the themes of the play. The use of this theme can be seen in the way the

character elaborated it in the play. In Beckett’s another work, Waiting for Godot,

the theme is about the act of waiting that became the main routine of the

characters. Waiting for Godot goes by showing the way the characters interact one

with another in their endless act of waiting. These characters find the fact that they

are in such condition where they are unable to run away from. This condition is

formed in the shape of the daily routine which is seemed like a trap for them.

  Albert Camus in his essay, Myth of Sisyphus, said that the absurdity of

human condition is that the situation of man who are full of the desire to explain

  

anything in his life and the world. He faced the reality that nothing can be

explained from life and the world.

  

But what is absurd is the confrontation of the irrational and the wild longing for

clarity whose calls echoes in the human heart. The absurd depends as much on

man as on the world. (Camus,1955:16).

  The moment of absurdity appears when man realized about his condition

of being. It is the time when he is aware about his existence. This awareness

raised a basic question about man’s existence. This awareness also leads mean to

a feeling of alienation between him and the world. Camus describes this situation

by using the example of people with their routine.

  Rising, streetcar, four hours of work, meal, sleep, and Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday according to the same rhythm-this path is easily followed most of the time. But one day the "why" arises and everything begins in that weariness tinged with amazement. In another words, absurdity arises from moments when all the acts of life that flow mechanically

stop, and when consciousness starts to wake up and move (Camus, 1955:15).

  Martin Esslin in The Theatre of the Absurd, a book that introduced the

term of The Theater of The Absurd in the field of theatre, analyzed Beckett and

his work using the theme of The Search for The Self. Endgame is discussed in

many aspects, such as the symbolism, the relation to other works of Beckett, and

also the bibliographical aspect of the author. Beckett, as said in The Theater of the

, is influenced by James Joyce, the writer who is a friend and literary Absurd master of Beckett.

  Endgame then becomes an allegory of the relationship between the domineering, nearly blind Joyce and his adoring disciple, who felt himself crushed by his master’s overpowering literary influence…Yet Endgame undoubtedly, has a very large number of human beings. The problems of the relationship between a literary master and his pupil would be very unlikely

  As we can see in many of Beckett’s work, Endgame is full with the tone of

pessimistic, and the pathetic of life. Characters appear in their physical boundary

and their inability to reach the reason or the meaning of their lives. Everything

seems nothing. It will be like what Beckett said that “nothing is more real than

th

nothing” (http://samuel-beckett.net/godot_greg html, accessed on October 11 ,

2007). also shows Beckett’s contemplation about the contradiction

  Endgame

between man’s personality and the world outside. The setting of the play is an

inside part the room of a house that said as the building for the last human beings

on earth. There is little description about the outside part of the room. Hamm, one

of the characters, always said that outside the room is “a death” (Beckett,

1986:96). The only thing that seemed clear for the characters is the death, the

natural end of their life that exactly will happen. Esslin showed this as the symbol

of the personality of man and the power outside him.

  In Endgame we are also certainly confronted with a very powerful expression of the sense of deadness, of leaden heaviness and hopelessness, that is the experienced in the states of deep depression: the world outside goes for the victim of such states, but inside his mind there is ceaseless argument between parts of his personality that have become autonomous entities (Esslin, 1969:48).

  The characterization of characters in Endgame leads to Camus ‘idea of

absurdity. Their failure to communicate with each other and the condition and all

the contradiction that appear between them and the world are the points that will

guide the study to find a reflection of the idea of absurdity. This thesis will

analyze the characterization of the four characters, Clov, Hamm, Nagg, and Nell

B. Problems Formulation

  In the relation with the explanation above, the writer raises two problems formulation that will be discussed further in the thesis.

1. How are Clov, Hamm, Nagg, and Nell characterized in Samuel Beckett’s

  Endgame ?

  

2. How does the characterization of characters in Endgame reflect the idea of

absurdity? C. Objectives of the Study

  Concerning the problems formulation that have been stated previously, the objectives of the study are represented as follows.

  The first objective is to find out how Clov, Hamm, Nagg, and Nell are characterized in Endgame.

  The second objective is to identify how characterization of characters in Endgame reflects the idea of absurdity.

  D. Definition of Term As stated in the title and explored in the above explanation, the writer

define the key concept of this study namely absurdity. In this Thesis the writer

applied Albert Camus’ concept of the idea of absurdity for the discussion.

  1. Absurdity The term of absurdity is defined into two major meanings. Firstly, one

refers to the general term of absurdity as described in dictionary. According to the

  

New Oxford American Dictionary Second Edition (2005), absurdity is the quality

or state of being ridiculous or wildly unreasonable.

  Another meaning of absurdity is rather specific to a philosophical term.

According to Albert Camus, absurdity can be said as the feeling, or situation

which is born of a confrontation between the human need of meaning and the

unreasonable silence of the world. In The Myth of Sisyphus Camus said as

follows.

  A world that can be explained even with bad reasons is a familiar world. But, on the other hand, in a universe suddenly divested of illusions and lights, man feels an alien, a stranger. His exile is without remedy since he deprived of the memory of a lost home or the hope of a promised land. This divorce between man and his life, the actor and his setting, is properly the feeling of absurdity (Camus, 1955:5).

CHAPTER II THEORETICAL REVIEW A. Review of Related Studies In the English Department of Sanata Dharma University, the studies on

  

absurdity had been conducted before. One of them is an undergraduate thesis by

Dicky Christanto entitled “Humanity, Absurdity, and Atheism Found in Albert

Camus’ The Plague in Relation with Karl Marx’ Criticism Toward Religion”.

This thesis analyzed the relation of Camus’ theory with Marx’ criticsm toward

religion. The analysis was aimed to find the answer for the philosophical

explanation of the main character believe on the atheism, the implication of the

main character atheism understanding toward the other character in the story in

relation to their atheism, the similarity and the difference of the atheism and it’s

application showed by the main character and the message from discussion over

the discourse of atheism on the story (Christanto, 1998:6).

  The other study is F.X. Lilik Dwi Mardjianto’s “The Significance of the

Characterization of the Minor characters to the Elaboration of the Theme in Albert

Camus’ The Stranger”. This study tries to find the characterization of the minor

character and then explores the significance of the characterization as the

antithesis of absurdity to the development of the theme of the story (Mardjianto,

2005:6).

  One of the studies on absurdity that analyzed Beckett’s works of drama is

done by Martin Esslin in his book The Theatre of the Absurd that the title became

  

Beckett and his works as The search for the self. The analysis on Beckett’s works

in this book was done in numbers of aspects.

  In The Theatre of the Absurd, Esslin said about the earlier works of

Samuel Beckett. One example of the works is Beckett’s poem Whoroscope which

presenting the philoshoper Descartes’ meditation. Another Beckett’s works is his

study on Proust, the French novelist, essayist, and critic. In this study, the theme

of Beckett’s later works can be seen such as his disbelief in communication. This

theme is inspired by Proust whose idea is that the art is the apotheosis of solitude.

  

On the communication, Proust said that there is no communication because there

are no vehicles of communication (Esslin, 1969:13).

  On the characters of Endgame, Esslin has done numbers of analysis in his

book that the writer will not state it entirely in here. The points that will be

reviewed are those that have been considered as having a significant issue to the

analysis. In his book, Esslin pointed out that Endgame can be seen as a

monodrama. This is a psychological view on the play. Endgame is seen as a

structure of a psychological part of a man. Esslin said that in the play the character

of Clov is performing the function of the senses for his senile master Hamm. This

idea is about the representation of different aspects of single personality.

  Hamm, Blind and emotional; Clov, performing the function of the senses for him- all these might well represent different aspects of a single personality, repressed memories in the subconscious mind, the emotional and the intellectual selves (Esslin,1969 : 44).

  Another psychological view on characters in Beckett’s work, in The

Theatre of the Absurd , is the characteristic that the characters of Beckett’s

different works have in common. It is about idea that the characters in most of

  

Beckett’s drama are all often been noticed for their peculiar psychological reality.

The characters from Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Vladimir and Estragon, have

been seen as so complementary that they might be the two halves of a single

personality, the conscious and the subconscious mind. Each of these three pairs

Pozzo-Lucky, Vladimir-Estragon, Hamm-Clov is linked by a relationship of

mutual independence, wanting to leave each other, at war with each other, and yet

dependent on each other. It is also an image of the interrelatedness of the elements

within a single personality, particularly if the personality is in conflict with itself

(Esslin, 1969:45).

  Esslin’s study also said about Beckett’s using the idea of disbelief on

communication. It is said as an original experience of Beckett himself which is

more profound and fundamental nature than mere autobiography. Endgame is said

as a revelation of Beckett’s experience of temporarily and evanescence; his sense

of the difficulty of communication between human beings (Esslin, 1969:48).

Beckett is said as a writer who success in depicting the inner side of a person. His

creative intuition explores the elements of experience and shows to what extent all

human beings carry the seeds of such depression and disintegration within the

deeper layers of their personality (Esslin, 1969:48).

  Esslin also reviewed the atmosphere that Beckett used in writing his

works. Esslin said that in Endgame we are confronted with a great expression of

pathetic and pessimism of life. The indications for this expression are the sense of

deadness, leaden heaviness, and hopelessness. This idea drawn a scheme about the

  

situation between an argument in man’s mind and the depression condition

surround him.

  In Endgame we are also certainly confronted with a very powerful expression of the sense of deadness, of leaden heaviness and hopelessness, that is experienced in states of deep depression: the world outside goes dead for the victim of such states, but inside his mind there is ceaseless argument between part of his personality that have become autonomous entities (Esslin, 1969:48).

  On the other hand, Esslin also criticized Endgame. He said that Endgame

is lacking of characters and plot. Characters in Endgame, Hamm and Clov, Nagg

and Nell, are not characters but the embodiments of basic human attitudes. He

stated that these characters are rather like the personified virtues and vices in

medieval mystery plays or Spanish autos sacramentales (Esslin, 1969:53).

Moreover, Esslin made a conclusion on the feature that he thought as the main

factor of success of Beckett’s Plays.

  This is also the key to the wide success of Beckett’s plays: to be confronted with concrete projections of the deepest fears and anxieties, which have been only vaguely experienced at a half-concious level, constitutes a process of catharsis and liberation analogous to the therapeutic effect in psychoanalysis of confronting the subconscious content of mind (Esslin, 1969:48).

  The most dominated analysis in The Theatre of the Absurd is about the

biography of Beckett and his exploration about the elusiveness of human

personality in his works. The theme, the search for the self, is deeply explored in

Esslin’s study on Beckett’s work. As we can see in his opinion in Beckett’s other

play, Krapp’s last Tape, Esslin said that Beckett has found graphic expression for

the problem of the human ever-changing identity (Esslin, 1969:55).

  Through the brilliant device of the autobiographical library of annual recorded statements, Beckett has found a graphic expression for the problem of the ever-changing identity of the self, which already described in his essay on proust. In Krapp’s Last Tape, the self at one moment in time is confronted

with its earlier incarnation only to find it utterly strange (Esslin,1969:56).

  Another study on Beckett is Alan Astro’s Understanding Samuel Beckett.

This book provides an analysis on Beckett’s works such as his early writings,

major novels, and major theatrical works. The analysis on the character can be

seen in several parts. Astro analyzed on Beckett’s drama in a complex way. The

analysis is dominated with Astro’s opinion on the way Beckett used the theme of

pessimism and the chaotic atmosphere in most of his play.

  In his analysis on Endgame, Astro focused on the relation between two

major characters in it, Hamm and Clov. Their physical description is the object

that Astro used for his analysis. The relation between Hamm and Clov is said as

the pseudocouple in the way they are complementing each other.

  Later we learn he is Hamm, Clov’s blind and paralyzed master. He cannot stand, and Clov cannot sit. They complement each other’s infirmities, as befits a pseudocouple (Astro, 1990:132).

  The catastrophe that is used as the setting of Endgame is one of the objects

of Astro’s analysis. The setting of Endgame is described as a painful place. A

great holocaust has happened in the world. This condition has affected the

characters. They live a sorrowful life. Astro gives a philosophical opinion about

Hamm. He said that Hamm’s need of pain-killer can be interpreted as his sickness

of his existence.

  Life in this postholocaust world is quite painful. Hamm repeatedly asks Clov for a pain-killer, and Clov always answers that the time for it has not yet to come. Until the end when he informs him,”There’s no more pain-killer” (E 71). These words apply to the audience as well: we share the characters’ pain as spectators of the terribly laborious dialogue and action. We cannot escape from the fact that existence is painful, and that world is bent on destruction. (Astro, 1990:132).

  Astro’s book provided opinion from other philosopher about the

significant of holocaust setting that is used in Endgame. It posted the Theodore

Adorno’s opinion about the using of symbols in Endgame. It is an argument about

the significant of Ardens mountains that has been used as the setting for the place

where Nagg and Nell, two of four characters in the play, having an accident and

lost their legs.

  Theodore Adorno, the social theoretician of the Frankfurt school, argues in an article on Endgame that the reference to the Ardennes Mountains is significant, for they were the site of one of the first modern mass destruction, the battlegrounds of World-War I (Astro, 1990:132).

  The idea of denying the existence of God appears as one of objects that

can be seen in the character. God, according to Astro’s analysis, is said as the

nonexistent creator for characters in Endgame. This can be seen in the part where

Astro discussed about they way Beckett use Antonin Artaud’s perception about

the modern theatre.

  Beckett follows the precepts of Antonin Artaud, who urged that modern theater leave realism behind and look toward classical Greek theater and its origin in ritual. Sacrifice is the most dramatic of rituals, and it is an important part of Endgame, where all humankind is offered up in an empty holocaust to

a God of whom Hamm says “the bastard! He doesn’t exist”(Astro,1990:133).

  The names of the four characters, Clov, Hamm, Nagg, and Nell, are

analyzed in the relation of their position, and condition on the play and as a

system of symbolism. These names said as having symbolical relation of the

significant of one characters towards the others.

  Hamm would be the hammer, merciless against all humanity, who bears down on several nails: his slave Clov (Clou in French means Nail), his father Nagg ( Nagel is german for Nail)and his mother Nell(who name sounds like Nail)(Astro,1990:134).

  The study on Endgame in Understanding Samuel Beckett also analyzed the

concept of time that is used in Endgame. To reach this, Astro analyzed the way

the character said about time. There is a significant relationship between the

character and time. On the idea of time, which is a complex one, Astro drew a

conclusion about the eternity of time as the time setting of the play.

  Hamm then says that “time was never and time is over, reckoning closed and story ended”(E 83). That time should be both over and never have been is contradictory but not illogical; if time has ended, we are in a timeless dimension; therefore it is impossible for time to have existed before, for there could be no “before” (Astro, 1990:135).

  In Endgame, Hamm has knowledge about a paradox of the end of time that

leads him to doubt that anything can end. The characters will not reach the end

since they will not feel or aware of it because they already end or death when the

end appears. As Astro stated that death is something that, in a sense, never comes.

  

Wait for it as we like, when it arrives we have died and cannot know it has arrived

(Astro, 1990:135).

  The idea of end that never arrives in Endgame is related to Sartre’s

concept of existentialism. This opinion about an end in Endgame is only can be

understood by using Sartre idea about being. This concept will help in

understanding the idea that it is impossible to say that anything could reach finish

in Endgame. It will be related to what professor Astro said as the “Non-

dimensional world”.

  It seems impossible for anything to finish in Endgame, for if all human life ceased, there would be nothingness, not and an “end”. In order that there be an end, a subjectivity is required to notice the ending; ends do not exist in themselves (Astro, 1990:137).

  Endgame has been an object of numbers of analyses. Most of them

  

characters are characterized. Others focused on the fact that the play could be

analyzed on its use of symbolism, the way it criticizing something, the value of

philosophical ideas in it, and its relation with Beckett’s life.

  In the relation to the school of philosophical thoughts Endgame is said as

having a critique toward several philosophical and aesthetic movements. Endgame

implies a critique of several philosophical and aesthetic movements: Naturalism,

Realism, Romanticism, Classicism, Enlightenment progress, Empiricism, and

Rationalism (http://www.msb27@u.washington.edu .accessed on October, 2007).

  Many studies on Beckett’s dramas are made by the comparison between

them. Beckett’s most known play, Waiting for Godot, is the one that is mostly

used to be compared with others. As we can see in Wallace Fowlie’s Dionysus in

, it said that Endgame is having much features than Waiting for Godot. The Paris

analysis about this features concern on the style of acting and performances that is

used in Endgame ( http:// www.theatrehistory.com/irish/beckett/endgame. html.

  Accessed on October, 2007).

  Beckett’s style of writing in Endgame is said as indicates with great

precision, as if he was writing a musical score, the pauses between speeches. This

is unusual for the French style of acting. If observed in the performance of the

play, the effect may well enhance the painfulness of waiting, the emptiness of

existence, the expectancy of collapse, of a manifestation of total despair. The

innumerable pauses between speeches when the stage is silent underscore the

anguish in each of the four characters and the nudity of the words themselves

when they are spoken (http:// www.theatrehistory.com/irish/beckett/endgame.

  Beckett is said as a play writer that allows total freedom to directors,

actors and critics, but then wishes to correct their interpretations. Worton in his

essay said that, Beckett does not want his actors to act. He wants them to do only

what he tells them. When they try to act, he becomes very angry.

  

What is most interesting is that whenever he directed or was closely involved in

the production of his plays, he focused on different aspects

(http://web.archive.org/web/20010128075500/http://www.cyberuni.vu/wormi001.

html. Accessed on October, 2007).

  Worton in his review of Endgame is comparing the theme that is used in

the play with the later works of Beckett’s novels. It cannot be denied, of course,

that Waiting for Godot and Endgame present many of the themes already explored

in the novels, all of which centre on the complex problem of how we can cope

with being-in-time. There is the abiding concern with death and dying, but death

as an event (i.e., actually becoming “a little heap of bones”) is presented as desired

but ultimately impossible, whereas dying as a process is shown to be our only

sure reality. Beckett's characters are haunted by “the sin of having been born”, a

sin which they can never expiate. Pozzo remarks that, one day we were born, one

day we shall die, the same day, the same second

(http://web.archive.org/web/20010128075500/http://www.cyberuni.vu/wormi001.

html. Accessed on October, 2007).

  As we have already seen in Astro’s analysis on Beckett’s play, the concept

of time is one of the analyzed objects. Worton also put this as one of the topic in

his analysis, Waiting for Godot and Endgame: Theatre as Text. The concept of

  

continuity. In other words, time indubitably exists as a force of which the

characters are aware in that they become increasingly decrepit, but they have no

sense of its continuity. If each day is like all the others, how can they then know

that time is really passing and that an end is night. Waitng for Godot is grounded

in the promise of an arrival that never occurs, and Endgame is the promise of a

departure that never happens. This would seem to imply that the characters look

forward to the future, yet if there is no past, there can be neither present nor

future. So in order to be able to project onto an unlocatable, and perhaps non-

existent future, the characters need to invent a past for themselves

(http://web.archive.org/web/20010128075500/http://www.cyberuni.vu/wormi001.

html. Accessed on October, 2007).

  Samuel Beckett was known with his inspirable works that open a new

  

chapter in the world of Theatre. We can see this in an article on New York Times

which said about Beckett’s influence to the traditional character. It said that,

Beckett's great innovation in Waiting for Godot and Endgame is both to question

the formal structure that playwrights of previous traditions have felt obliged to

respect, and to offer a mimesis or representation of reality that recognizes and

inscribes the formlessness of existence without attempting to make it 'fit' any

model.” ''(http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/03/reviews/20046.html.

Accessed on October, 2007 ).

  Beckett himself gives an opinion about the new form that he brings in the What I am saying does not mean that there will henceforth be no form in art. It only means that there will be a new form, and that this form will be of such a type that it admits the chaos, and does not try to say that the chaos is really something else. The form and the chaos remain separate. The latter is not reduced to the former. That is why the form itself becomes a preoccupation, because it exists as a problem separate from the material it accommodates. To find a form that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist (http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/03/reviews/20046.html. Accessed on ). October, 2007 Beckett’s work is mostly considered as a work which has an element of

bleakness. This consideration might comes from the use of pathetic, and

pessimism theme in his works. His name, in adjectival form, is used in English as

a synonym for bleakness.

  Though his name in the adjectival form, Beckettian, entered the English language as a synonym for bleakness, he was a man of great humor and compassion, in his life as in his work. He was a tragicomic playwright whose art was consistently instilled with mordant wit (http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/03/reviews/20046.html. Accessed on October, 2007 ).

  Beckett did not really concern with the public opinion on his work. There

was a rarely record on his activity of giving a public statement. He received Noble

Prize in 1969 but Beckett did not attend the ceremony. New York Times said that,

In 1969 Beckett was awarded the Nobel Prize in literature for a body of work that

''has transformed the destitution of man into his exaltation.'' Karl Ragnar Gierow,

secretary of the Swedish Academy, said his writing ''rises like a Miserere from all

mankind, its muffled minor key sounding liberation to the oppressed and comfort

to those in need.'' He was on holiday in Morocco at the time of the Nobel

announcement and in characteristic fashion offered no public statement and

  

gave his prize money of $72,800 to needy artists.

(http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/03/reviews/20046.html. Accessed on

). October, 2007 The studies above deal with several objects of study in analyzing

Endgame . They explored the characters, the writing style of Beckett, the

significant of theme and setting, and the philosophical values, from many

philosophical schools, in Endgame. This thesis’ focus is the particular

philosophical value that reflected in characters’s characterization of Endgame.

The philosophical value that is analyzed in this thesis is the concept of absurdity

based on Albert Camus’ idea of absurdity. The main analysis is about the

characters’ characterization and how it reflects the idea of absurdity.

B. Review of Related Theories

1. Theory of Character and Characterization

  According to A Glossary of Literary Terms, characters are persons

presented in the dramatic or narrative work, who are interpreted by the reader as

being endowed with moral, dispositional and emotional qualities and that are

expressed in what the say -the dialog- and by what they do -the action-.

  (Abrams,1981:20).

  In order to understand about character and its development we must

concern about the character’s consistency as Abrams state in Glossary of Literary Term. Character may remain essentially ‘stable’, or unchanged in his outlook and his dispositions, from beginning to end of a work, or he may undergo a radical change, either through a gradual development or as a result of an extreme crisis. Whether a character remains stable or changes, the reader of a traditional, realistic work requires ‘consistency’- the character should not suddenly break off an act in a way not plausibly grounded in his temperament as we have already come to know it”(Abrams,1981:20).

  According to A Handbook of Literary Terms, character is divided into two

groups which are main and minor. Many writers present their main characters

with fullness of detail, while the minor appear somewhat lifeless. However this

conception of main and minor is not that significance since there is a tendency to

regard any human being who strays into the book as being worthy (Yelland,

1953:31).

  On the characterization, Roger B. Henkle has drawn a scheme about the

position of character in novels to define a characterization. He said that

characterization is central to the fictional experiences and the principal objective

of the creation of the characters in novels is to enable us to understand and to

experience the people (Henkle, 1977:86).

  On the author way of presenting information about the character, Edgar V. Robert and Henry E. Jacob describe about the four ways.

1. What the characters themselves say (and think if the author expresses their thoughts).

  On the whole, speeches may be accepted at face value to indicate the

character of a speaker. Sometimes, however, a speech may be made offhand, or it

may reflect a momentary emotional or intellectual state. Readers must consider

  

the situation or total context of a statement and also whether show change or

development.

  2. What the characters do Readers should interpret action as sign of character. Often reader will find

that action is inconsistent with logic or expectation. Such behavior may signal

naiveté, weakness, deceit, or scheming personality, they may also signalize strong

inner conflicts, and also change or growth.

  3. What other characters said about them In stories and in plays, as in life, people often talk about other people. If

the speakers are honest, reader may accept their opinion as accurate description of

other characters. However, sometimes person’s prejudices and interests distort

what that person said. Therefore, an author may give a reader a good impression

of characters by having a bad or negative character said a negative things about

them.

4. What the author say about them, speaking as a storyteller or an observer.

  What the author, speaking with the authorial voice, says about character is

to be accepted as accurate. However, when the authorial voice interpret action and

characteristic, the author himself or herself assume the role of a reader or a critic,

and any opinions may be either right or wrong. For this reason, author frequently

avoid interpretations and devote their skill instead to arranging events and

speeches so that only readers themselves draw conclusions (Robert and Jacob,

1989:147).

2. Theory of Absurdity

  A century before Camus, the 19th century Danish philosopher Søren

Kierkegaard wrote extensively on the absurdity of the world. In The Myth of

, Camus reviewed Kierkegaard’s writing about absurdity.

  Sisyphus The man who writes: “The surest of stubborn silences is not to hold’s one tongue but to talk” makes sure in the beginning that no truth is absolute or can render satisfactory an existence that is impossible in itself. Don Juan of the understanding, he multiplies pseudonyms and contradiction, writes his at the same time as the manual of cynical

  Discourse of Edification spiritualism, The Diary of the Seducer. He refuses consolations, ethic, reliable principles ( Camus, 1955:19).

  Entering the era after the Second World War people start to make a

reflection about them with the achievement of life that they have reached so far.

  

People found the reality that what they have thought as modernism, and other

ideas, concepts or ideologies brought to them nothing but war and suffering. The

most basic and oldest question remains unanswered. A question which asking

about the reason of human existence.

  Philosophy is one of the oldest schools of thinking that accompanies

human being in the history of their lives. Philosophy has already walk through a

long way that take it into a long process of the dynamically development. One

way of answering the old question about human existence is provided by the

existentialist philosopher. Albert Camus in many of his work is using the theme of

the absurdity of human existence in the world. Camus can be said as an

existentialist thinker, by concerning on his works, as the others existentialists like

Sartre and Kierkegaard (Kauffman, 1956:49). Camus’ theory of absurdity is

  

Sartre. Camus and writers like Pascal, Kierkegaard, and Nietzsche can be

classified as writers who were first of all philosophers or religious writers, but

they have stylistic achievements and literary flair that give them a special place in

the of world literature as well.

  Jean-Paul Sartre, the founder of existentialism, state that the basic of

existentialism is the totally freedom of man since there is no God who give an

essence for man’s existence. Existentialists believe that Existence is prior to

Essence.

  What is meant here by saying that existence precedes essence? It means that, first of all, the human individual exists, turns up, appears in the world, and, only afterwards, defines himself. If the human individual, as the existentialist thinks of him, is indefinable, it is because at first he is nothing. Only afterward will he be something, and he himself will have made what he will be. Thus, there is no human nature, since there is no God to conceive of it. Not only is the human individual what he conceives himself to be, but he is also only what he wills himself to be after this thrust toward existence (Kaufmann,1966:287).

  (1955) is one of Camus’ works that has been mostly The Myth of Sisyphus

used for the reference of his absurdity theory. This is a book with the essential or

fundamental statement of Camus’ philosophy. It is in this book that Camus

formally introduces and fully articulates his most famous idea, the concept of the

absurdity, and his well known essay about Sisyphus which is a symbol of human’s

life struggle. On the opening Camus directly stated the main problem of the

discussion that there is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is

suicide (Camus,1955 :3).

  Camus put his idea through the book with excellent aphorisms and

  

He said that absurdity must not be evaded either by religion “philosophical

suicide” or by annihilation “physical suicide”; the task of living should not merely

be accepted, it must be embraced. The struggle itself toward the heights is enough

to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy (Camus, 1955:91).

  In order to understand absurdity, it is not as simply of finding references

that we can see in the reality of life today such as paradoxes, incongruities, and

intellectual confusion. As Camus himself emphasizes and tries to make clear, the

absurd expresses a fundamental disharmony, a tragic incompatibility, in our

existence. In effect, he argues that the absurd is the product of a collision or

confrontation between our human desire for order, meaning, and purpose in life

and the blank, indifferent “silence of the universe.” The absurd is not in man nor

in the world, but in their presence together. It is the only bond uniting them

(Camus,1955:16).

  We can make a conclusion that in Camus’ view there are three possible

philosophical responses to this predicament. Two of these he condemns as

evasions; the other he puts forward as a proper solution. Man first choice is blunt

and simple: physical suicide. If we decide that a life without some essential

purpose or meaning is not worth living, we can simply choose to kill ourselves

(Camus,1955:6). Camus rejects this choice as cowardly. In his terms it is a

repudiation or renunciation of life, not a true revolt.

  The second choice is the religious solution of positing a transcendent

world of solace and meaning beyond the absurd (Camus, 1955:7). Camus himself

calls this solution “philosophical suicide” and rejects it as transparently evasive

  

example, through some type of mysticism or leap of faith) is to annihilate reason,

which in Camus’ view is as fatal and self-destructive as physical suicide. In effect,

instead of removing himself from the absurd confrontation of self and world like

the physical suicide, the religious believer simply removes the offending world,

replacing it, via a kind of metaphysical things, with a more agreeable alternative.

  The last choice is simply to accept absurdity, or better yet to embrace it,

and to continue living. Since the absurd in his view is an unavoidable, indeed

defining, characteristic of the human condition, the only proper response to it is

full, unflinching, courageous acceptance. As Camus said, that one must be lived

all the better if it has no meaning (Camus, 1955:8). The idea of this revolt is can

be seen in his use of Sisyphus is in his philosophical essay.

  Doomed to eternal labor at his rock, fully conscious of the essential hopelessness of his plight, Sisyphus nevertheless pushes on. In doing so he becomes for Camus a superb icon of the spirit of revolt and of the human condition (http://www.iep.utm.edu/c/camus.htm. Accessed on October, 2007).

  . In the Myth of Sisyphus, Camus explores the idea of absurdity by

conducting a large scheme of explanation in form of essay. There he stated about

the absurdity as the ultimate truth and provide requirements, which he said as the

enumeration, to understand absurdity (Camus,1955:10). In the scheme we can

found the use of the three themes in the discussion on absurdity.

  In The Myth of Sisyphus Camus stated about the indications of absurdity.

In the essay titled Absurd Walls Camus showed how the absurdity can appear to

men in a sudden attack. The absurd will be seen when men realize about their

condition. This awareness leads men to the situation that there is an unexplainable

distance between themselves and the world. It can be said that when men start

  

aware all the object of reality will be revealed from the meaning that they already

had have. One of the object is the daily live. When men realize the mechanically

routine of their life, they are entering the step to experience the absurdity.

  Another point of the schemes in understanding Camus’ concept of

absurdity is the idea of the end. The end or death is one of the objects of

discussion on the idea of absurdity. Camus said that what is left is a destiny of

which only the end is predetermined. Apart from this single predetermined fact of

death, all, joy or happiness, is freedom (O’Brien.1970: 30).

  Camus pointed man to rise each day to fight a battle he knows he cannot

win. Although facing the ultimate truth of his failure to understand the world man

should keep the struggle with wit, grace, compassion for others, and even a sense

of mission. In the other word man should became what Camus said as an absurd

hero. A hero whose face the absurdity with all his integrities.

C. Theoretical Framework

  The theories stated in this chapter will be use to analyze Endgame. The two

theories, the theory of characters and the theory of characterization, will provide

basic help in analyzing the characters in the play. The theory of absurdity of

Camus will be a guide to find the value of absurdity in the characters of the play.

  The theory of characters and characterization are applied in studying the

characters in Endgame. Basically there only are four characters in Endgame, they

are Hamm, Clov, Nagg, and Nell. As Abrams stated in his Glossary of Literary

  

theory will help the analysis of the characters in Endgame. The theory of

characterization by Edgar V. Robert and Henry E. Jacobs will be a guide in

analyzing the characterization of the characters in the play. That is through what

the characters themselves say, what the characters do, what other characters said

about them, and what the author say about them (speaking as a storyteller or an

observer) this theory will help in studying the development of the characters in the

play.

  This thesis uses Camus’ theory of absurdity as the basic. The analysis will

be mainly based on the concept of absurdity by Camus. Making a intensive review

on the theory and study it from many point of view such as historically and it

development as one of the philosophical school the writer would try to find how

the characterization of characters reflects Camus’ idea of absurdity in Endgame.

CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY A. Object of the Study Samuel Beckett’s Endgame is a dramatic work which still uses the same theme of waiting that has been used in another Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot.

  was written in French, entitled Fin de Partie, then Samuel Beckett Endgame

himself translated it into English. The process of writing Endgame was finished in

July 1956. It was published in February 1958 by Groove Press, copyright 1958 by

Groove Press. This play, the English version, consists of 43 pages and it was

republished together with Beckett’s other plays in Samuel Beckett The Complete

by Faber and Faber limited in London in 1986. The first

  Dramatic Works

production, in the hands of Roger Blin, was put on in the Studio des Champs-

Elysées in May of 1958.

  Endgame i s a play in one act. The characters of the play are four persons;

Hamm, Clov, Nagg, and Nell. Each of the characters was described as having a

mutual depending toward another. The story began with Clov, the servant of the

house, starts some activities which can be said as his daily tasks. Clov serves

Hamm, the master but later can be concluded as Clov’s father, and Hamm’s

parents; Nagg and Nell who have no legs and living in the ashbin. Most parts of

the play are the conversation between the four characters and it is dominated with

Clov intent to leave Hamm. It can be said that the waiting in the play is the

  B. Approach of the Study This thesis deals with the idea of absurdity that reflected in the

characterization of characters in Samuel Beckett’s Endgame. As a literary work

can be said to have a value that is a reflection of the reality. The value

  Endgame

could be in form of critic or an inspirable idea that will help man in their

contemplation or searching for the meaning of live. This thesis will use this moral

philosophical idea as the main idea of the discussion.

  Endgame is a portrait of the hopeless human condition. By using the idea

of absurdity we can see that Endgame contain an idea of man searching the

meaning of his life and it is a critic toward man eternal failure to understand about

it. Therefore the Moral-philosophical approach will be applied in the analysis

since there is an indication of the present of philosophical value in Endgame.

  

Moral-philosophical approach, according to Guerin, is an approach of which is

basic is to examine the literary work that teach morality and to probe

philosophical issue (Guerin, 1979:29). With this approach, the analysis to find the

idea of absurdity that reflected on the characterization of characters in Beckett’s

will be possible to be done.

  Endgame

  C. Method of the Study In order to support this research, several sources of data are used. They are

books and articles that related to Endgame and philosophically idea of absurdity

which belong to Camus. Those sources are Samuel Beckett the Complete and many more. The library research method to Sartre, The Theater of the Absurd

is used as the main method in order to find out the play and supportive readings to

study the topic. The writer also used the other media i.e. internet to collect an

information that related to the research. By finding the data from relevant

websites, the writer got more information about the author, the play, the

philosophy idea of absurdity, others related articles, and essays. Several steps in

the following were done to reach the result of the study.

  Firstly, the writer read the play in order to understand about it. An

intensive reading was taken for the purpose of the best understanding of the play.

  

The primary source of this study was Bekcett’s Endgame, a play which included

in the book Samuel Beckett the Complete Dramatic Works. The writer was

interested to the relation of the play with the philosophical idea about human

existence. A deeper reading led the writer to specify the philosophical aspect into

the idea of absurdity.

  The second step was collecting the data that is related to the play and the

philosophy of absurdity. Most of the data were the studies about Beckett’s work

of plays and it relation to the scope of philosophy. The writer also used secondary

sources to analyze the study. Some of the sources are The Theatre of the Absurd

and The Myth of Sisyphus. The first book was used as a guide in understanding

Beckett’s dramas in the aspect of its role in the field of drama.

  The third step was processing the data and starting to make the research in

more systematically form. In this step the writer tried to find a problem which

  

step, the writer started the analysis by answering the problem formulations. The

collection of data and readings support the writer to understand the concept of

philosophy and the theory of character and characterization. The Myth of Sisyphus

is reliable guide to understand about the concept of Absurdity that stated by

Camus. The writer’s comprehension on the theory of character and

characterization was supported by A Handbook of Literary Terms, and Reading

  The first problem the novel: An introduction to technique of interpreting fiction.

formulation that is related to the characterization of all characters was answered

by applied the theory to the fact that can be found in the play. The second problem

formulation, the idea of absurdity that reflected on the characterization of

characters, was possible to answer after having an understanding of the concept of

absurdity.

  Finally, the fourth step. This last step was drawing a conclusion. In this

step the writer made a summary of all process of analyzing and the result

of the research.

CHAPTER IV ANALYSIS Samuel Beckett’s Endgame is a play in one act. The characters in the play appear

  in their way of interaction to others. The play goes by showing a contact, and a communication that the characters build between themselves since they are members of a family. Most of the activity that the characters do in the play is the routine of their lives.

  Endgame

  is a story about a life of a family. The characters are the four people who are father (Nagg), mother(Nell),son(Hamm), servant (Clov). The condition of this family, which is said as the last human being after a big catastrophe happened on the earth, is dying for food and hope. These characters seemed like trapped in a monotonous condition that will be ended only by their natural deaths. The story is about how the characters deal with the time between their present time and the end of their lives.

  This undergraduate thesis focused on the characterization of characters in

  Endgame

  and certain idea reflected by the characterization. In this part the study will do the analysis by answering the questions that are stated in the Problem Formulation. The question that will be answered firstly is about the characterization of characters in the play; Hamm, Clove, Nagg and Nell. On the next part, this chapter will answer the second question about how the characterization of the characters reflects the idea of absurdity.

  31 A. Characterization of Characters in Endgame In this part the writer will analyze the characterization of each of the characters in

  Endgame

  . There are four characters in Endgame. They are, in order of the appearance, Clov, Hamm, Nagg and Nell. In this analysis the focus will be on all of the four characters. By reading and understanding the role of these characters in the play a conclusion can be drawn in how they are characterized.

1. Clov

  Clov is a servant of Hamm. He is younger than Hamm. He is characterized as a person who has a staggering walk and a stiff movement. The physical description of Clov can be seen in the stage direction of the play.

  CLOV goes and stands under window left. Stiff, staggering walk (Beckett,1986:92).

  Clov has a physical problem, he can not sit. This physical problem of Clov is the opposite of the other character in Endgame, Hamm, whose physical problem is the inability to stand.

  HAMM . Sit on him! CLOV . I can’t sit. HAMM . True. And I can’t stand (Beckett,1986:97).

  There are other physical problems that Clov has. His legs and eyes are not in a proper condition.

  HAMM. How are your eyes? CLOV. Bad HAMM. How are your legs? CLOV. Bad (Beckett,1986:95).

  Clov is characterized as a person who plays an important rule in the house. He is the only character who has an ability to walk. He, as a servant, is the one who arrange the

  32 food for Hamm and his parents. He also manages all things in the house. Clov is controlled by Hamm. His main duty is to wait an order from Hamm, or Nagg, and Nell.

  CLOV. I’ll go to my kitchen, ten feet by ten feet, and wait for him to whistle me (Beckett,1986:93). CLOV. I’m back again, with the biscuit. [He gives the biscuit to NAGG who fingers

  it, sniffs it. ]

  NAGG. [Plaintively.] What is it? CLOV. Spratt’s Medium ( Beckett.1986:97).

  Clov is obsessed by order. As we can see in the next first quotations his walking was done in an exact number of steps. This is shown by his straight movement and also his idea or ambition to arrange everything and put them in order. The addiction to put anything in order is one of the ways he is characterized in Endgame.

  CLOV. I’ll go to my kitchen, ten feet by ten feet, and wait for him to whistle me (Beckett,1986:93). CLOV : [ Straightening up.] I love order. It’s my dream. A world where all would be silent and still and each thing in its last place, under the last dust

  ( Beckett,1986:120). As a servant Clov is characterized as a person who is very loyal to Hamm. He finds that it is difficult for him to leave Hamm. As we can see in the following quotation,

  Clov has already tried to do it since he was a young boy. His obedience according to Clov himself is something that he will not ever understand.

  HAMM. I thought told you to be off. CLOV. I’m trying. [He goes to door, halts.] Ever since I was whelped (Beckett,1986:98).

  CLOV. There’s one thing I’ll never understand. [ He gets down.] Why I always obey you. Can you explain that to me? HAMM. No…Perhaps it’s compassion (Beckett,1986:129).

  33 Clov is actually has an opportunity to end Hamm live. One of the reasons for Clov of not doing the action is a food. Hamm is the one who know the combination of the larder where the food is kept.

  HAMM. Why don’t you kill me? CLOV . I don’t know the combination of the larder. [ Pause.] (Beckett, 1986:96).

  Clov is very loyal to Hamm. As the result this character always changes his opinion when it is facing with Hamm’s. He never replies Hamm with a direct offensive answer. The replying of Clov to Hamm can be said as a compromised answer or a loyal answer of a servant to his master.

  HAMM. Nature has forgotten us. CLOV . There’s no more nature. HAMM. No more nature! You exaggerate. CLOV. In the vicinity. HAMM. But we breathe, we change! We lose our hair, our teeth! Our bloom! Our ideals! CLOV. Then she hasn’t forgotten us. HAMM. But you say there is none ( Beckett,1986: 97).

  Clov and Hamm always has a conversation where both of them reply each other with a short expression. This expression is more about the logical meaning of the sentence rather than the motive of the speaker who said it. In the following quotations we can see how Clov and Hamm having the kind of conversation. Clov is characterized as a person who has a different way of using language.

  HAMM. I’ll give you nothing more to eat. CLOV . Then we’ll die HAMM. I’ll give you just enough to keep you from dying. You’ll be hungry all the time.

  CLOV . Then we shan’t die (Beckett,1986: 95). HAMM. Why do you stay with me? CLOV . Why do you keep me? HAMM. There’s no one else. CLOV . There’s nowhere else (Beckett,1986:95).

  34 Hamm several times asked Clov to leave him. Clov, as he said, has already tried to leave Hamm but he never success in doing it. The conversation between Clov and Hamm about his leaving always ends with Clov’s obedience to Hamm. As we can see in the following quotation, Clov follows what Hamm has said to him although it was a contradiction with his own previous idea. This is the part that explains that Clov is characterized as a person with a hesitation.

  CLOV. So you all want me to leave you. HAMM. Naturally. CLOV. Then I’ll leave you. HAMM. You can’t leave us. CLOV. Then I shan’t leave you (Beckett,1986:110).

  Clov does anything in the scheduled routine and seemed to have no concern about the other thing beside his job. He contemplates about the life that they have. This contemplation result in questions about the existence and the meaning of life. This is an indication that Clov is characterized as a person who realizes about his existence. In the quotation below, there is a part where Clov asks Hamm about reason of his life that he has to face every day and his existence. Hamm answered that the reason of his life is the routine and the reason of his existence is the dialog.

  CLOV. Why this farce, day after day? HAMM. Routine (Beckett.1986:107). CLOV. What is there to keep me here. HAMM. The dialogue.[Pause.] (Beckett.1986:121).

  Clov’s contemplation is also about the end of their life. This idea of end seems like the only exact thing that can be predicted in his life since Clov is a hesitating character. The first quotation below is the first dialog that Clov said in Endgame which also the first dialog of the play. Clov is in a waiting of the finish or the end of his life. In

  35 the second quotation below, it shows that Clov has a conversation with Hamm on the idea about the end.

  CLOV. [Fixed gaze, tonelessly.] Finished, it’s finished, nearly finished, it must be nearly finished (Beckett,1986:93). CLOV. Do you see how it goes on. HAMM. More or less. CLOV. Will it not soon be the end? HAMM. I’m afraid it will. CLOV. Pah! You will make up another (Beckett,1986:122). Clov has a kind of father-son relationship with Hamm. He is sometimes said as a son of Hamm. There is no exact information about Clov’s status in the family. There are only clues that show several facts about Clov. According to Hamm narration, in the quotation follows, Clov is characterized as the son of a man who long time ago came to him for asking a help. At that time Clov was a little boy and he start to lives with Hamm as his father start to work there. The first quotation is a part of Hamm’s monologue where he called Clov as his son, the second and third quotations are the story about the past time of Clov.

  HAMM. If I can hold my peace, and sit quiet, it will be all over with sound, and motion, all over with sound, and done with.[Pause.] I’ll have called my father and I’ll have called my…[he hesitates]…my son (Beckett,1986:126). HAMM. I’ll tell you how it goes. He comes crawling on his belly- CLOV. Who? HAMM. What? CLOV. Who do you mean, he? HAMM. Who do I mean! Yet another. CLOV. Ah him! I wasn’t sure. HAMM. Crawling on his belly, whining for bread for his brat. He’s offered a job as gardener. Before- [ CLOV bursts out laughing.] What is there so funny about that?(Beckett,1986:121). HAMM.[ After reflection.] Nor I.[Pause.] I continue then. Before accepting with gratitude he asks if he may have his little boy with him. CLOV. What age?

  36 HAMM. Oh tiny. CLOV. He would have climbed the trees. HAMM. All the little odd jobs (Beckett,1986:122).

  Clov, in the discussion of the physical ability, is characterized as the opposite of Hamm. This situation makes Clove become a very important person for Hamm. The information about the outside world is come to Hamm through the sight of Clov. Hamm is depending on Clov almost for every single help.

  HAMM. Look at sea. CLOV . It’s the same. HAMM. Look at the ocean! [CLOV gets down, take a few steps towards window left, goes back for ladder, carries

  it over and sets it down under window left, gets up on it, turns the telescope on the without, looks at length. He starts, lowers the telescope, examines it, turns it again on the without

  .] CLOV. Never seen anything like that! HAMM. [Anxious.] What? A sail? A fin? Smoke? CLOV. [Looking.] The light is sunk.

  HAMM. [Relieved] Pah! We all knew That (Beckett,1986:106).

  In the end of the play, Clov is preparing to leave the place in order to see the little boy that he has looked through the telescope. Hamm, who realized about Clov’s departure, said a long monologue that ended with an asking for Clov to remain.

  HAMM. More complications! [CLOV gets down.] Not an underplot, I trust.

  [CLOV moves ladder nearer window, gets up on it, turns telescope on the

  without

  .] CLOV. [Dismayed.] looks like a small boy! HAMM.[Sarcastic.] A small …boy! CLOV. I’ll go and see (Beckett,1986:130).

  HAMM. And speak no more about it…[He finishes unfolding.]…speak no more. [He

  holds the handkerchief spread out before him. ] Old stancher! [Pause.]

  You…remain. (Beckett,1986:133) After made an analysis on the character of Clov, the characterization of this character can be said as follows. Clov is characterized as a loyal person. He is a loyal servant of Hamm. He has all the physical ability which is an opposition to Hamm’s

  37 condition. Clov can not sit and has a stiff and straight movement. Clov is the one who has a responsibility for food arrangement of the family. He provides Hamm with many helps since Hamm has a lot of physical problem. Clov made contemplation on his life, his existence, and the end of his life. Clov is always characterized to leave the family but he never made it.

2. Hamm

  Hamm is a blind middle-aged man. He is a senile old man who uses a wheeled chair. His position is in the center of the room. Hamm’s physical description in the text can be seen as follows.

  In a dressing-gown, a stiff toque on his head, a large blood-stained handkerchief over his face, a whistle hanging from his neck, a rug over his knees, thick socks on his feet (Beckett,1986:93).

  Hamm is characterized as a person who has the highest authority in the house. He controlled and kept the food supply for the people in the house. He is the one who knows the combination of larder where the food is kept. This can be seen in the quotation below that shows Hamm’s control of the food storage.

  HAMM. Why don’t you kill me? CLOV. I don’t know the combination of the larder.[Pause.] (Beckett,1986:96).

  HAMM. Why don’t you finish us?[Pause.] I’ll tell you the combination of the larder if you promise to finish me (Beckett,1986:110).

  Hamm is characterized as a noble person. He has a good sense in using his noble manner with words. Hamm has a special characteristic of talking. He sometimes speaks in a monologue style. The opening and the closing of Hamm’s part of dialog were done in monologue. The first of the quotations follow is his first dialogue, and the second is his last part.

  38 HAMM. Me-[He yawns]- to play. [He holds the handkerchief spread out before

  him. ] Old stancher! [He takes off his glasses, wipes his eyes, his face, the glasses, puts them on again, folds the handkerchief and puts it neatly in the breast-pocket of his dressing-gown. He clears his throat, joins the tips of his fingers.

  ] Can there be misery-[He yawns]-loftier than mine? No doubt. Formerly. But Now? [Pause.] (Beckett,1986:93).

  HAMM. Me to play. [Pause. Wearily.] Old endgame, play and lose and have done with losing. [ Pause. More animated.] Let me see.[Pause.] Ah yes![He tries to

  move the chair, using the gaff as before. Enter CLOV, dressed for the road. Panama hat, tweed coat, raincoat over his arm, umbrella, bag. He halts by the door and stands there, impassive and motionless, his eye fixed on HAMM, till the end. HAMM gives up.] (Beckett,1986:132).

  Hamm is a storyteller. During the play he several times tells a story, he called it as his soliloquy, which is a narration of something he wants to say or his memory of a past time. As we can see in the below quotations, the first is Hamm’s story about the process of being old that will happen to Clov. The story about his friend who has a mentally illness can be seen in the second quotation.

  HAMM. In my house.[Pause. With prophetic relish.] One day you’ll be blind, like me. You’ll be sitting there, a speck in the void, in the dark, for ever, like me.[

  Pause. ] One day you’ll say to yourself, I’m tired, I’ll sit down, and you’ll go

  and sit down. Then you’ll say, I’m hungry, I’ll get up and get something to eat. But you won’t get up (Beckett,1986:109). HAMM. I once knew a madman who thought the end of the world had come. He was a painter-and engraver. I had a great fondness for him. I used to go and see him, in the asylum. I’d take him by the hand and drag him to window. Look! There! All the rising corn! And there! Look! The sails of the herring fleet! All that loveliness![Pause.] He’d snatch away his hand and go back into his corner. Appalled. All he had seen was ashes (Beckett,1986:113). Hamm calls his story as his soliloquy or chronicle. He wants to be heard by anyone else. He will force somebody to hear his story. Moreover for Clov, Hamm’s story is just the one that he has telling himself all his days. This shows that Hamm is characterized as person with a power and control.

  39 HAMM. Ask my father if he wants to listen to my story. [CLOV goes to bins, raises

  

the lid of NAGG’s, stoops, looks into it. Pause. He straightens up.]

CLOV. He’s asleep.

  HAMM. Wake him.( Beckett,1986:115).

  Hamm has a problem on his emotion. His unstable emotion is able to turn him from a calm and easy speaker to a brutal and violent screamer. When something or somebody interrupts him annoyingly he will use strong words of curse to express his feeling of dislike. The expression that he used for cursing is a formal expression, such as “accursed progenitor”, this, again, shows that he is characterized as a person with nobility.

  HAMM. Accursed progenitor! NAGG. Me pap! HAMM. The old folks at home! No decency Left! Guzzle,guzzle, that’s all they think of.[He whistles. Enter CLOV. He halts beside the chair.] Well! I thought you were leaving me (Beckett,1986:96).

  Hamm’s awareness of his life condition leads him to think about its end. He knows that the only truth is that the end of life will come. He also knows that he and the others people in the house have a freedom to make the end comes faster. He several times said to Clov to leave or to end the life of him and the rest of the family.

  HAMM. Why don’t you finish us?[Pause.] I’ll tell you the combination of the larder if you promise to finish me. CLOV. I couldn’t finish you (Beckett,1986 : 110).

  In the middle of their suffering condition Hamm still dreamed for a joyful life somewhere out there and the existence of another human being. The condition of the world in their time is post-great catastrophic one. Hamm and his parents are not in good physical condition. All the characters have a physically problem. Hamm is blind, paralyzed, and a user of pain-killer. They are running out of food and medicine supply and are nearing the end of their life.

  40 HAMM. [With ardour.] Let’s go from here, the two of us! South! You can make a raft and the currents will carry us away, far away, to other…mammals!(Beckett,1986:109). HAMM. That here we’re down in a hole. [Pause.] But beyond the hills? Eh? Perhaps it’s still green. Eh? [Pause] Flora! Pomona! [Ecstatically.] Ceres! [Pause.]

  Perhaps you won’t need to go very far (Beckett,1986:111). Hamm’s attitude in the previous paragraph, however, is not the indication that

  Hamm is hoping of a better life. Hamm is characterized as a hesitating person. He never really wants a better life or any other life at all. This can be seen in his dislike of the possibility of a new life that occurs several times in the play. The quotation below shows the part when Hamm worries about a crablouse that Clov has in his body. Hamm is afraid that the insect will start a new life on earth.

  CLOV. [Anguished, scratching himself.] Unless it’s crablouse. HAMM.[Very perturbed.] But humanity might start from there all over again! Catch him, for the love of God! (Beckett,1986 : 108).

  Hamm is characterized as a senile person. Since he is weak and unable to move his body, Hamm depends on other’s help to do his activity. Clov as the servant is the one who always help him. The helps are the sight, the movement, food supply, and a listener. Whenever Hamm wants to know the information about their surrounding Clov will provide him with the information about it.

  HAMM. What’s the weather like? CLOV. The same as usual. HAMM. Look at the earth. CLOV. I’ve looked. HAMM. With the glass? CLOV. No need of the glass. HAMM. Look at it with the glass ( Beckett,1986:105).

  Hamm is also characterized as a teacher of Clov. Since they have stayed together for a long time we can say that it was Hamm who taught Clov about things in life. As we

  41 can see in the play, it was Hamm that taught Clov about language. Hamm also provided an answer when Clov asking about the reason of their existence. This can be seen in the second and third quotation below.

  CLOV. [ Violently.] that means that bloody awful day, long ago, before this bloody awful day. I use the words you taught me, if they don’t mean anything anymore, teach me others (Beckett,1986 :113). CLOV. Why this farce, day after day? HAMM. Routine (Beckett.1986:107).

  CLOV. What is there to keep me here. HAMM. The dialogue.[Pause.] (Beckett.1986:121).

  Hamm is characterized as a person who has a particular way to communicate with Clov. As we can see in the conversation between Hamm and Clov, they are talking in a choppier manner. The language they used is seemed less thoughtfully and more automatically.

  HAMM. I’ll give you nothing more to eat. CLOV . Then we’ll die HAMM. I’ll give you just enough to keep you from dying. You’ll be hungry all the time.

  CLOV . Then we shan’t die. (Beckett,1986: 95). HAMM. Why do you stay with me? CLOV . Why do you keep me? HAMM. There’s no one else. CLOV . There’s nowhere else. (Beckett,1986:95).

  Based on the play we can see some evidences that show the relation between Hamm and Clov. Hamm is characterized as the master of Clov and also as a person who treated Clov as his own son. One of Hamm’s narrations is about a man who comes to Hamm in asking for a help. This man is probably a real father of Clov. The story indicates that the man wanted to work for Hamm.

  HAMM. I’ll tell you how it goes. He comes crawling on his belly-

  42 CLOV. Who? HAMM. What? CLOV. Who do you mean, he? HAMM. Who do I mean! Yet another. CLOV. Ah him! I wasn’t sure. HAMM. Crawling on his belly, whining for bread for his brat. He’s offered a job as gardener. Before- [ CLOV bursts out laughing.] What is there so funny about that?(Beckett,1986:121). The analysis on the characterization of Hamm resulted in some conclusions. Hamm is characterized as an old man who has a lot of physical weakness and also as noble person. He has the highest authority in the house. He controlled the food supply for the people in the house. Hamm has a special characteristic of talking. He sometimes speaks in a monologue style. His unstable emotion makes him as a cruel and offensive character. Hamm is characterized as a hesitating person. He is worrying about the possibility of a new life. Hamm is aware that the only truth in his life is the end or his natural death. In communicating with Clov Hamm used a peculiar style of conversation. He is dependent on Clov, his servant, who he treated like his own son.

3. Nagg

  Nagg is the father of Hamm. He is characterized as a person who lives in the bin, a kind of container. This is due to his physical condition. He is characterized as an old, sick, legless person with a very white face.

  CLOV .Sometimes on horse. [The lid of one of the bins lift and the hands of NAGG

  appear, gripping the rim. Then his head emerges. Very white face. NAGG yawns, then listens

  ] (Beckett,1986:96). He lost his legs in the accident that he had with his wife. The story about the accident can be seen in the first quotation below. Nagg loves his wife, Nell, very much and he is not really in a good relation with his son, Hamm. Nagg has a habit of telling a story. It is a kind of narration which can be seen in the second quotation. This habit is the

  43 same thing as Hamm’s. On the contrary, Nagg’s only listener is his wife, Nell. In this case he is different from Hamm who insisted on the other person to hear his story. Nagg is a romantic character, the story that he told is about the happy life of him and his wife past time. The intention of him in telling the story is to make his wife happy.

  NAGG. Do you remember- NELL. No. NAGG. When we crashed on our tandem and lost our shanks. [They laugh heartily.] NELL. It was in the Ardennes. [ They laugh less heartily.] NAGG. On the road to Sedan (Beckett,1986:100).

  NAGG . What does that mean? [Pause.] That means nothing.[Pause.] Will I tell you the story of the tailor? NELL . No.[Pause.] What for? NAGG . To cheer you up. NELL . It’s not funny. NAGG. It always made you laugh. [Pause.] The first time I thought you’d die (Beckett,1986:102).

  Nagg is characterized as a loving person. He loves his wife Nell. He cares about Nell condition although he can not do much about it since he is limited by the physical condition. In their sorrow and painful condition Nagg tries to do his best for Nell. He tells a happy and romantic story, he cares about Nell physical condition and he shares the food with her.

  NAGG . …Do you want a bit? NELL . Biscuit. I’ve kept you half. [He looks at the biscuit. Proudly. ] Three quarters. For you. Here. [He proffers the biscuit.] No? [Pause.] Do you not feel well? (Beckett,1986:100).

  Not all of stories that Nell tells is about the happy memory. There is a story which is a kind of pathetic story. It is a humour about the comparison of a trouser and the earth.

  Although it has a funny side, the sad and gloomy atmosphere can still be found on the story. In this humour, Nell shows a comparison between the world and trousers.

  44 NAGG. .…Well, to make it short, the bluebells are blowing and he ballockses the buttonholes. [Customer’s voice] ‘ God damn you to hell, Sir, no, it’s indecent, there are limits! In six days, do you hear me, six days, God made the world. Yes Sir, no less Sir, the WORLD! And you are not bloody well capable of making me a pair of trousers in three months!’[Tailor’s voice, scandalized.] ’But my dear Sir, look-[ disdainful gesture, disgustedly]-at the world-[Pause.]-and look-[

  Loving gesture,proudly ]-at my TROUSERS!’ (Beckett,1986:102)

  The relation between Nagg and Hamm is full with conflict and hatred. Hamm speaks to Nagg with rude words and expression. Nagg is treated badly by his son Hamm.

  Hamm shows his hate to his father by using a strong and rude word when they are talking, this can be seen in the first quotation below. On the other hand, as we can see in the second quotation, Nagg always tries to find a chance to mock Hamm. He listens to the what Hamm said and make a joke out of it.

  NAGG . Me pap! HAMM . Accursed progenitor! (Beckett,1986: 96). HAMM. …A heart, a heart in my head.[Pause.] NAGG .[Soft.] Do you hear him? A heart in his head! [ He chuckles cautiously.] ( Beckett,1986: 100).

  Nagg realizes that Hamm has treated him in a very rude way. The tension of their relation is getting high and it reaches the peak when Hamm once again pushes him by using the strong, impolite and rude expression. In this part Nagg defense himself by saying his hope that someday Hamm will need his companion and attention.

  NAGG . …I hope the day will come when you’ll realy need to have me listen to you, and you need to hear my voice, any voice. [Pause.] Yes, I hope I’ll live till then, to hear you calling me like when you are a tiny boy, and were frightened, in the dark, and I was your only hope (Beckett,1986:120).

  Nagg is characterized as a loving person. He is an old, sick, legless person who lives in the bin. He cares about his wife, Nell very much. He tries to give all his best for Nagg although his effort is limited by his physical weakness. This characteristic can be

  45 seen on his sharing of food with Nell, and his habit of telling a story in order to make his wife happy. Nagg is characterized as having the relationship which is full with conflict and hatred with his son, Hamm.

4. Nell

  Nell is the only female character in Endgame. She is a wife to Nagg and a mother of Hamm. She lives in the bin next to Nagg’s and having a weaker physical condition than her husband. Nell is characterized as a cheerful person. She is a good listener for her husband and might be the only closest friend for him since Hamm treats him badly. Nell is romantic to Nagg. This can be seen in the quotations below.

  NELL . What is it, my pet? [Pause.] Time for love? NAGG . Were you asleep? NELL . Oh no! ( Beckett,1986:99).

  Nell is characterized as a legless and weak person. This is the reason for her position in the bin. She lost her legs in the accident that she had with her husband in their past time. The physical problem that Nell has can be seen in the below quotation. It shows how her sight and hearing are not in a proper condition.

  NAGG. Can you see me? NELL. Hardly. And you? NAGG. What? NELL. Can you see me? NAGG.Hardly (Beckett,1986:99).

  NAGG.Can you hear me? NELL.Yes. And you? NAGG.Yes.[Pause.] our hearing hasn’t failed.

  NELL. Our what? (Beckett,1986:99).

  Nell gives comments or statement in the conversation with her husband, Nagg. Her comments and also her position in the family is a neutral one. She is characterized her as a neutral person. She does not support either Hamm or Nagg and also does not

  46 against them. Her neutral characteristic can be seen in the first quotation below. She is characterized as a woman who wants to show the real condition of their suffering life. This attitude can be seen in the part, in the second quotation below, when she shows how as an old and sick woman she was treated carelessly.

  HAMM . A heart, a heart in my head. NAGG. [ Soft.] Do you hear him? A heart in his head! [ He chuckles cautiously.] NELL. One mustn’t laugh at those things, Nagg. Why must you always laugh at them? NAGG. Not so loud! NELL . [Without lowering her voice.] Nothing is funnier than unhappiness, I grant you that. But - NAGG : [Shocked.] Oh! NELL : Yes, yes, it’s the most comical thing in the world. And we laugh, we laugh, with a will, in the beginning. But it’s always the same thing. Yes, it’s like the funny story we have heard too often, we still find it funny, but we don’t laugh any more ( Beckett, 1986:101).

  NAGG . Has he changed your sawdust? NELL . It isn’t sawdust. [Pause. Wearily.] Can you not be a little accurate, Nagg? NAGG . Your sand then. It’s not important.

  NELL . It is important.[Pause.] NAGG . It was sawdust once. NELL . Once! NAGG . And now it’s sand. [Pause.] From the shore. [Pause. Impatiently.] Now it’s sand fetches from the shore. NELL .Now it’s sand. NAGG .Has he changed yours? NELL . No NAGG .Nor mine (Beckett,1986:100).

  From the second quotation above we can conclude that the condition of the people in the room is getting worse because of their limitation of food providing. The crisis is not only happens toward the food supply but also on the treatment for wealthy of the people. Nagg and Nell as the old persons did not receive a proper caring anymore. This can be seen on how the sawdust in their bins is not changed and more over it is no longer sawdust but only sand.

  47 Nell has her own opinion about Nagg’s story. In the first quotation below, we can see that she is aware of their bitter life. Nell said that nothing is funnier than unhappiness.

  The unhappiness in her saying refers to the real condition of their life. Therefore we can conclude that she was characterized as a person who realizes about the suffering life they have. In the second quotation below, Nell is asking about the routine that they face day after day. She said it as a farce.

  NELL . [Without lowering her voice.] Nothing is funnier than unhappiness, I grant you that. But - NAGG : [Shocked.] Oh! NELL : Yes, yes, it’s the most comical thing in the world. And we laugh, we laugh, with a will, in the beginning. But it’s always the same thing. Yes, it’s like the funny story we have heard too often, we still find it funny, but we don’t laugh any more ( Beckett, 1986:101).

  NELL. Why this farce, day after day? [Pause.] NAGG. I have lost my tooth (Beckett.1986:99).

  Nell only appears once in the play. She was found dead in her bin sometimes after she made her last a conversation with Nagg. Clov is the one who examined her condition and found that the old lady is dead.

  HAMM : Go and see is she dead. [CLOV goes to bins, raises the lid of NELL’s,

  stoops, looks into it. Pause .] CLOV : Looks like it (Beckett, 1986:122).

  Nell is the only female character in Endgame. She is characterized as a mother of Hamm and wife to Nagg. Nell is characterized as a legless and weak person .Nell lost her legs on an accident. She lives in the ashbin because of her physical condition. Other physical problems that she has are the poor condition of her eyes and hearing. She is characterized as a neutral person. She does not support either Hamm or Negg. She was

  48 characterized as a person who realizes about the suffering lives they have. She was found dead in her ashbin by Clov.

B. The Idea of Absurdity Reflected in the Characterization of Characters in

  Endgame

  In Beckett’s Endgame there are four characters. These characters have been analyzed from many aspects in some studies. In this thesis the focus is in the characterization of characters and how it reflects the idea of absurdity. The analysis on the characterization of the characters has been done in the previous part of this chapter.

  The result of the analysis shows that the characterization of the characters has several points that can be said as the reflection of the idea of absurdity.

  Based on the previous analysis in this chapter, the writer conducts several themes that will be the points of the discussion of how the characterization reflects the idea of absurdity. These themes are pointed based on the study of the characterization of the characters and the study of Camus’ idea of Absurdity. In short, the three themes are the points that some of characters share in common, and show the reflection of the idea of absurdity. These themes are the Routine, Meaningless Condition and the End. Absurdity, according to Camus, cannot be explored thoroughly. In the Myth of Sisyphus, Camus explores the idea of absurdity by conducting a large scheme of explanation in form of essay. There he stated about the absurdity as the ultimate truth and provide requirements, which he said as the enumeration, to understand absurdity (Camus,1955:10). In the scheme we can found the use of the three themes in the discussion on absurdity.

  The three themes are the points that some of the characters share in common. The idea of absurdity that can be seen on the characterization of characters in Endgame does

  49 not appear directly. It is in the scheme of critics and allegory that formed by the characterization of the characters in the play.

  The analysis on the characterization of character leads into conclusion that not all of characters in their characterization reflect the idea of absurdity. There are only three characters that characterization reflected the idea of absurdity. They are Hamm, Clov, and Nell. The idea of absurdity that this characterization of characters has can be arranged in the three themes. In the following part of analysis the writer will give an explanation on each of the themes, and the discussion of choosing it as the point of absurdity. Moreover there will be an explanation about how the characterization of these three characters reflects Camus’ idea of absurdity.

1. The Routine

  Characters in Endgame live in a sorrowful and suffering situation. These characters continue their daily life with only one real fact that it will come to end. The condition of their life has already reached the poor condition where they run out of food and medicine supply. These characters are aware of the situation. They identified all about their activity by referring it to the past time.

  In The Myth of Sisyphus Camus stated about the indications of absurdity. In the essay titled Absurd Walls Camus showed how the absurdity can appear to men in a sudden attack. The absurd will be seen when men realize about their condition. This awareness leads men to the situation that there is an unexplainable distance between themselves and the world. It can be said that when men start aware all the object of reality will be revealed from the meaning that they already had have. One of the object is

  50 the daily live. When men realize the mechanically routine of their life, they are entering the step to experience the absurdity.

  It happens that the stage sets collapse. Rising, streetcar, four hours in the office or the factory, meal, streetcar, four hours of work, meal, sleep, and Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday according to the same rhytm- this path is easily followed most of the time. But one day the why arises and everything begins in that weariness tinged with amazement. (Camus,1955:10).

  The characters on Endgame realize about their routine life. This is shown mostly in the characterization of Hamm and Clov. They always try to explain their life and their condition by using their playing of words and conversation. In the conversation we can see that they know that their life is the situation where a continuing existence playing its part. This situation is always stated by these characters as “something is taking its course”.

  HAMM. It’s the end of the day like any other day, isn’it, Clov? CLOV . Looks like it. [ Pause] HAMM . [ Anguished.] What’s happening, what’s happening? CLOV. Something its taking its course (Beckett. 1986:98).

  CLOV. Pah! You saw your heart. HAMM. No, it was living. [ Pause.Anguished.] Clov! CLOV. Yes.

  HAMM. What’s happening? CLOV. Something is taking its course (Beckett.1986:107).

  In their own view about their lives, characters in Endgame are characterized as persons who found that there is a fact that they do not understand about their lives, and their existences. Life is taking its own way silence and meaninglessly. These parts of conversation were done in the anguishing attitude of Hamm. He is described as a curious figure who wants to know what is happening. This can be said as an existential question. As we can see in The Myth of Sisyphus, what is absurd is the confrontation of this

  51 irrational and the wild longing for clarity whose call echoes in the human heart (Camus 1955 :16). Hamm ‘s characterization as a person with curiosity to know about their live as something that happens can be said as a reflection of the idea of absurdity.

  Clov only has a knowledge that there is something that taking its course. He does not explain more about it. This is a sign that Clov is limited, indeed he knows that he is limited, to give a further explanation about their existence. They realized that they are trapped in such a condition where there is no answer for the cause of their existence.

  Clov’s short answer can be said as the sign that he knows about the unexplainable of their existence. Thus through this the characterization of Clov reflected the idea of absurdity.

  In Endgame most of the characters appear with the same question which asking about their existence. They found that the routine has made a distance between them and the real meaning of life. The routine has become a question for them. The time that they have passed day by day lead them to ask about their existence and life that they have to pass on the going time. This question can bee seen in characters of Clov and Nell.

  CLOV. Why this farce, day after day? HAMM. Routine. (Beckett.1986:107). NELL. Why this farce, day after day?

  [Pause.] NAGG. I have lost my tooth. (Beckett.1986:99). These two characters have the same questions. It asks about the routine of life that they have to pass everyday. Clov question was answered by Hamm while Nell’s was not responded by Nagg. The question is an indication that the character realize about their existence, the routine, and they are asking about the relation of those. Moreover they are asking about the meaning of those subjects. Clov and Nell feel that there is something

  52 meaningless in their life and their routine. This condition of those characters’ characterization is a reflection of the idea of absurdity.

  On the quotation above we can see that Hamm responds Clov that the farce they faced every day is a routine. In the other part of Endgame there is also a dialog where Clov asking about the reason of his presence. Hamm answers this question with short answer.

  CLOV. What is there to keep me here. HAMM. The dialogue.[Pause.] (Beckett.1986:121).

  Hamm’s answers shows that his knowledge of their existence is also limited. He is in the same position with Clov. They are limited to know more about their existence. His answer “routine” shows his limitation. Hamm realizes that the meaning of their existence can be explain more than the fact that what they do every day is a routine and what keep them in the stage of life is the dialogue. The dialogue can be said as the reference of the play itself. Moreover it is also reference of a person’s part in life. The system, the culture that developed by human being which still unable to answer the question about their existence.

  HAMM. We’re not beginning to…to…mean something? CLOV. Mean something! You and I, mean something![Brief laugh.] Ah that’s a good one! HAMM. I wonder.[Pause] Imagine if a rational being came back to earth, wouldn’t he be liable to get ideas into his head if he observed us long enough. [ voice of a rational being.] Ah,good, now I see what it is, yes, now I understand what they’re at![CLOV starts, drops the telescope and brgins

  to scratch his belly with both hands. Normal voice .] And without going so

  far as that, we ourselves…[with emotion.]…we ourselves…at certain moments…[Vehemently.] To think perhaps it won’t all have been for nothing! (Beckett.1986:108). These characters realized that there is a failure when they try to explain more about their existence. The only thing that they can be sure is that they exist. In their

  53 search of meaning Hamm once finally reached the idea about their existence. In the quotation above we can see Hamm’s contemplation about the meaning their existence. He was wondering if they are beginning to mean something. The characters Hamm, Clov, and Nell are characterized as have a curiosity about their existence and life that they faced in the everyday routine. This characterization of those characters can be said as the reflection of the idea of absurdity.

2. Meaningless Condition

  In this part the writer will analyze about the meaningless condition that can reflected by the characterization of characters in Endgame. The writer found that the meaningless condition in Endgame is shown in communication. Beckett is already known as the writer who used the topic of failure of communication in many of his works.

  The communication is a main thing dealing with the human interaction in his life. In communication there are a lot of process of transferring feeling, intention, and also meaning. In the reality the system of communication does not work in rigid or formal way. The dynamic characteristic of human being makes a communication become more complicated. Men depend themselves in the perceptions and prejudices.

  Beckettian dramas have been analyzed as a critic toward communication. This argument is aimed at language as one main part in communication. J. Martin in her essay said that there is a gap in the language that raised the absurdity. This gap results in the lack of meaning in the using of language.

  Beckett's use of "character" in this manner provides us with a window into the theoretical gap that is fundamental to postmodern thought. This "gap" represents that absurdity of language: simultaneously, language provides us with an excess of meaning while also providing a lack of meaning because language is always already overdetermined. Language is slippery; we explain concepts through the use of other

  54 concepts, via the chain of signifiers; thus, we can never "get to" the truth -- we are alienated from (or lack) absolute truth. (http://www.themodernword.com/Samuel_Beckett.html).

  By using this point of view we can see that Beckett already pointed out some themes in most of his dramas. One of them is about communication. In Endgame the characters are related each other by the communication or the using of language. These characters get identification of themselves and the others by the communication. Their existences are bold by the communication. When they are using language to indicate someone or something they are building the world around them. This world are the big construction of the meaning that produced by these characters’ understanding. In the relation to Camus idea of absurdity it can be said that this understanding is a human effort to find the meaning of life.

  Men try to recognize the world by building systems of understanding. Camus criticizes these systems as tools that find a contradiction within their selves. He said that the mind’s first step is to distinguish what is true from what is false, as soon as thought reflects on itself, what it first discovers is a contradiction (Camus.1955:12). The logical thought with its contradiction, according to Camus, is fail to help men in understanding the world. The expression of the thought is in the form of language. It can be said that language carries all the contradiction of the rational thought. In this part, language, as one of the systems that men have to understand about the world, is fail too in helping men.

  The other opinion about communication in Endgame comes from Alan Astro. In his book Understanding Samuel Beckett, Astro stated an analysis on the way language is using in Endgame. The object his analysis is the fragmentation of language in Endgame.

  55 He also made a comparison between Endgame and Waiting for Godot in the case of language usage.

  In waiting for godot, Beckett had already fragmented language terribly in Vladimir’s and Estragon’s exchange of short responses, but in Endgame the characters address each other in an even choppier manner. Didi and Gogo may be allowed to use language a bit thoughtfully, less automatically, because they have a purpose- they are waiting for Godot- where as Hamm and Clov are allowed no such a illusions: they no there is no reason for them to go on ( Astro,1990:140).

  The exchange of short response is a type of language that can be seen in characters of Endgame. The characters using this way of communication as a kind of game where the words are playing and there is no purpose but the use of language for the language itself.

  HAMM. I’ll give you nothing more to eat. CLOV . Then we’ll die HAMM. I’ll give you just enough to keep you from dying. You’ll be hungry all the time.

  CLOV . Then we shan’t die (Beckett,1986: 95). HAMM. Why do you stay with me? CLOV . Why do you keep me? HAMM. There’s no one else. CLOV . There’s nowhere else (Beckett,1986:95).

  The exchange response in Endgame is done as the characters going to play their part in the play. The meaning of the expressions that they use is no longer important. They already know the answer of their question. The function of language is not to communicate but only to be explored in its logic aspect. Clov’s response to Hamm is a kind of conclusion that he can draws from it. The same thing is also done by Hamm.

  CLOV . So you all want me to leave you. HAMM. Naturally. CLOV. Then I’ll leave you. HAMM. You can’t leave us. CLOV. Then I shan’t leave you (Beckett, 1986:110).

  HAMM. Wait! [ CLOV halts.] How are you eyes? CLOV. Bad. HAMM. But you can see. CLOV. All I want.

  56 HAMM. How are your legs? CLOV. Bad.

  HAMM. But you can walk. CLOV. I come…and go (Beckett, 1986:109).

  The quotation above shows the short response between Clov and Hamm. One of the characteristics of Clov is his love of manage everything in order. This characteristic really supports him in using the language. Moreover it supports him in exploring the systematic of language. The rule of asking and answer, and also to make a logic conclusion based on a statement.

  HAMM. Answer me first CLOV. What?. HAMM. Do you know what’s happened? CLOV. When? Where? HAMM. [ Violently.] When! What’s happened! Use your head, can’t you! What has happened? CLOV. What for Christ’s sake does it matter? [ He looks out of the window]. HAMM. I don’t know (Beckett, 1986:128). HAMM. I ‘ve got on with my story.[Pause.] I’ve got on with it well. [Pause.

  Irritably .] Ask me where I’ve got to.

  CLOV. Oh, by the way, your story? HAMM. [ Surprised.] What story? CLOV. The one you’ve been tell yourself all your…days.

  HAMM. Ah you mean my chronicle? CLOV. That’s the one.[Pause.] HAMM. [Angrily.] keep going, can’t you, keep going!(Beckett,1986:21.).

  The character of Hamm has already known as a man with authority. He uses his power as a master in the communication that he builds with Clov. The language become more fragmented when it used by Hamm. As we can see in the above quotations, the communication between Hamm and Clov is only followed the logic of language it is not of transferring what they really want to express, if there any of it.

  These characters direct state their opinion on language and communication can be seen in the followed quotation. It shows that the character, in this example is Clov, draw a limit between himself and the language. Clov said that, words or language is made in a system with the function of transferring a meaning. The meaning is not the absolute but it

  57 was based on the agreement that made by the speakers. This shows that language can lose it meaning and can stand as a system with its own logic rule.

  CLOV. I oiled them yesterday. HAMM. Yesterday! What does that mean? Yesterday! CLOV. [ Violently] that mean the bloody awful day, long ago, before this bloody awful day. I use the words you taught me. If they don’t mean anything any more, teach me others. Or let me be silent (Beckett, 1986:113).

  Camus’ idea absurdity is about the condition that men faced when they try to find a meaning of the world and life. Camus said that, at this point of his effort man stands face to face with the irrational ( Camus.1955:21). There is no meaning in men life although they use a thought as a system to understand about it. Language is one part of the system.

  In Endgame, characters in using the language show that language as a system not always successes for communication. This failure can bring a meaningless condition of these characters in Endgame. They use language not for communicate but for the sake of passing the time of their existence. From this a conclusion can be drawn that a meaningless condition that appears on the characterization of characters of Hamm and Clov when they communicate is the reflection of the idea of absurdity.

3. The End

  The end in Endgame can be said as a one of major themes that can be studied and analyzed from the play. Endgame is actually a drama with the end as the theme.

  Characters in Endgame are longing for the end. Interpretations about the end in Endgame may result in many opinions. Astro in Understanding Samuel Beckett said that the end in

  Endgame that had been showed at some part of the play refer to the fate of men’s death.

  Later on, Hamm will echo Clov’s opening words : “the end is in the beginning and yet you go on”(E69). Paradoxical as this idea is, it is not unfamiliar. When a child is born, its fate is sealed; it will someday die and return to the inanimate state from which it emerged ( Astro.1990:131).

  58 The end or death is one of the objects of discussion on the idea of absurdity.

  Camus said that what is left is a destiny of which only the end is predetermined. Apart from this single predetermined fact of death, all, joy or happiness, is freedom (O’Brien.1970: 30). The only fact about live is that it will reach an end. Characters in

  Endgame are aware about this fact.

  Their awareness of the end resulted in their purposeless and meaningless activity that they have done for the sake of reach the end. They found that there is no meaning for their existence. This condition that the characters are characterized as persons who are realizing about the end of their existence is the reflection of the idea of absurdity.

  Clov first words of the play is “finished, it’s finished, nearly finished…” as we can see in the followed quotation. Hamm first words are also about the end. Characters in

  Endgame

  showed their awareness about the end. This end can be said about the end of themselves or their existence. It seems like these characters already know that the true fact is that they wil reach an end. Clov concluded that their life time is only the distance between their present time and the end. They are continually in the position of nearly finished.

  CLOV. [Fixed gaze, tonelessly.] Finished, it’s finished, nearly finished, it must be nearly finished (Beckett,1986:93). HAMM. And yet I hesitate to…to end. Yes, there it is, it’s time it ended and yet I hesitate to-[He yawns]- to end (Beckett, 1986:93).

  The end becomes a subject of the conversation between Hamm and Clov. They are giving their own opinion about it. When talking about the end it directly refers to their existence, and their life which Hamm said as “this thing”. This expression appears several time in Endgame. It can be said as an indication that these characters are characterized as persons who really tortured by their own existence. As Astro said about the sorrowful live of characters in Endgame that “there’s no more pain-killer”(

  59 spectators of a terribly laborious dialogue and action. We cannot escape from the fact that existence is painful, and that our world is bent on destruction (Astro,1990:132).

  HAMM. Have you not had enough? CLOV. Yes! [Pause.] Of what? HAMM. Of this…this…thing.

  CLOV. I always had. [Pause.] Not you? HAMM. [Gloomily.] Then there’s no reason for it to change. CLOV. It may end.[Pause.] All life long the same question the same answers(Beckett,1986:94).

  HAMM. Do you not think this has gone on long enough? CLOV . Yes![Pause.] What? HAMM. This…this…thing.

  CLOV. I’ve always thought so.[Pause.]You not? (Beckett,1986:94).

  The end is known as the true fact for the characters. In the other hand they never know when it will arrive. This raised a difference of opinion between themselves. Hamm is characterized as a person that believes that the end will come soon while Clov does not say direct opinion about it. He is only more pessimistic of it.

  CLOV. Do you see how it goes on. HAMM. More or less. CLOV. Will it not soon be the end? HAMM. I’m afraid it will.

  CLOV. Pah! You will make up another (Beckett,1986:122). CLOV. You don’t believe me? You think I’m inventing? [Pause.] HAMM. It’s the end, Clov, we‘ve come to the end. I don’t need you anymore.

  [Pause.] CLOV. Lucky for you (Beckett, 1986:131). As one of the objects of discussion on the idea of absurdity, Camus said that the end or death is the fact that what is left is a destiny of which only the end is predetermined. (O’Brien.1970: 30). It can be said as the one of enumeration points of the feeling that may admit the absurd. The characters on Endgame are characterized as persons that aware of this predetermined end. This awareness led them to the system of enumeration where men feel that he belonged to the time. This kind of enumeration is the feelings that may admit of the absurd (Camus,1955:11).

CHAPTER V CONCLUSION This thesis is aimed to find out the characterization of the characters in Beckett’s Endgame

  and how the characterization reflects the idea of absurdity. These characters are Clov, Hamm, Nagg and Nell. In analyze the characterization of characters and the way it reflects of the idea of absurdity the moral philosophical approach is needed. This approach provides a system that focus is to examine the literary work that teaches morality and to probe philosophical issue. Therefore the idea of absurdity as the philosophical value can be observed by using this approach.

  Having done the analysis on the characterization of the characters in Endgame in the previous chapter through what the characters themselves say, what the characters do, what other characters said about them, and what the author say about them, speaking as a storyteller or an observer, it can be concluded that the characters has a different characterization each other. Most of the characters are sharing the same characteristic; all of them have physical problems.

  The characterization of Clov can be said as follows. Clov is characterized as a loyal person. He is a loyal servant of Hamm. He has all the physical ability which is an opposition to Hamm’s condition. Clov can not sit and has a stiff and straight movement. Clov is the one who has a responsibility for food arrangement of the family. He provides Hamm with many helps since Hamm has a lot of physical problem. Clov made contemplation on his life, his existence, and the end of his life. Clov is always characterized to leave the family but he never made it.

  61 The analysis on the characterization of Hamm resulted in some conclusions.

  Hamm is characterized as a senile old man who has a lot of physical weakness and also as noble person. He has the highest authority in the house. He controlled the food supply for the people in the house. Hamm has a special characteristic of talking. He sometimes speaks in a monologue style. His unstable emotion makes him as a cruel and offensive character. Hamm is characterized as a hesitating person. He is worrying about the possibility of a new life. Hamm is aware that the only truth in his life is the end or his natural death. In communicating with Clov Hamm used a peculiar style of conversation. He is dependent on Clov, his servant, who he treated like his own son.

  Nagg is characterized as a loving person. He is an old, sick, legless person who lives in the bin. He cares about his wife, Nell very much. He tries to give all his best for Nagg although his effort is limited by his physical weakness. This characteristic can be seen on his sharing of food with Nell, and his habit of telling a story in order to make his wife happy. Nell is characterized as having the relationship which is full with conflict and hatred with his son, Hamm.

  Nell is the only female character in Endgame. She is characterized as a mother of Hamm and wife to Nagg. Nell is characterized as a legless and weak person .Nell lost her legs on an accident. She lives in the ashbin because of her physical condition. Other physical problems that she has are the poor condition of her eyes and hearing. She is characterized as a neutral person. She does not support either Hamm or Negg. She was characterized as a person who realizes about the suffering life they have. She was found dead in her bin by Clov.

  62 In analyzing the way the characters in Endgame reflected the idea of absurdity the writer based on Albert Camus idea of absurdity. Camus’ idea of absurdity is based in its main belief that there is no meaning of human life. Human is described as a poor creatures desperately seeking hope and meaning in a hopeless, meaningless world (Camus1955:16,). The theory of absurdity studies human life as the main object it also provides an opinion on the dealing with the absurdity in human life. Men should accept the absurdity and continue to live with it. In the analysis the writer found that the characterization of characters in Endgame reflected some themes. These themes are the reflection of the philosophical idea that can be referred to Camus’ idea of absurdity. These themes are the routine, meaningless condition and the end. The writer found that not all of characters in their characterization reflects the idea of absurdity. There are only three characters that characterization reflected the idea of absurdity. They are Hamm, Clov, and Nell.

  The Routine is one of the points in identifying the feeling of the absurdity. The characters on Endgame realize about their routine life. This is shown on Hamm and Clov that always try to explain their life and their condition by using their playing of words and conversation. In the conversation we can see that they know that their lives is the situation where a continuing existence playing its part. This situation is always stated by these characters as “something is taking its course”. The time that they have passed day by day lead them to ask about their existence and life that they have to pass on the going time. The character of Nell is also asking about the routine of their lives.

  The meaningless condition in Endgame can be seen in the communication between the characters. The exchange response in Endgame is done as the characters

  63 going to play their part in the play. The meaning of the expressions that they use is no longer important. They already know the answer of their question. The function of language is not to communicate but only to be explored in its logic aspect. Clov’s response to Hamm is a kind of conclusion that he can draws from it. The same thing is also done by Hamm.

  The end or death is one of the objects of discussion on the idea of absurdity. Camus said that what is left is a destiny of which only the end is predetermined. Apart from this single predetermined fact of death, all, joy or happiness, is freedom (O’Brien.1970: 30). The only fact about live is that it will reach an end. Characters in

  Endgame,

  Hamm and Clov, are aware about this fact. Their awareness of the end resulted in their purposeless and meaningless activity that they have done for the sake of reach the end. They found that there is no meaning for their existence.

  

BIBLIOGRAPHY

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Winston, 1981.

Astro, Alan. Understanding Samuel Beckett. South Carolina: University of South

Carolina,1992.

Beckett, Samuel. The Complete Dramatic Works. London:Faber and Faber,1986.

Byron, Mark S Samuel Beckett’s

  . “ Endgame ”<http://www.msb27@u.washington.edu.> (October, 2007).

  

Camus, Albert. The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays, translated by Justin

O’Brien. New York: Vintage Books, 1955.

Christianto, Dicky. “Humanity, Absurdity, and Atheism Found in Albert Camus’

The Plague in Relation with Karl Marx’ Criticism Toward Religion”

  Undergraduate Thesis. Sanata Dharma University,1998.

Esslin, Martin. The Theatre of the Absurd. New York: Doubleday &

Company,Inc., 1969.

  

Fowlie, Wallace “ENDGAME A synopsis and analysis of the play by Samuel

Beckett” <http:// www.theatrehistory.com/irish/beckett/endgame. html.> (October, 2007).

  

Guerin, Wilfred. A Handbook of Critical Approach to Literature Second Edition.

  New York: Harper and Row Publisher, 1999.

Henkle, Robert B. Reading the novel: An introduction to technique of interpreting

fiction. New York: Harper and Row Publisher, 1977.

  

Kauffman, Walter. Existentialism from Dotoyevsky to Sartre. Cleveland:The

World Publishing Company, 1956.

Mardjianto, F.X. Lilik Dwi. “The Significance of the Characterization of the

Minor characters to the Elaboration of the Theme in Albert Camus’ The

  ”. Undergraduate Thesis. Sanata Dharma University, 2005.

  Stranger

Martin, Jeniffer. “Beckettian Drama as Protest:A Postmodern Examination of the

  

Mckean, Erin. The New Oxford American Dictionary Second Edition. New York :

Oxford University Press,Inc.,2005.

O’Brien, Connor Cruise. Camus ed.: Frank Kemode. London: Collins sons and

Co. Ltd,1970.

O'Hara,J.D.”SavageLoving”<http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/08/03/reviews/2

0046.html>(October, 2007 ).

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Writing.

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Yelland, H.L.,S.C. Jones, A Handbook of Literary Terms. London:Angus and

Robertson,1953.

  

“The Internet Encyclopedia for

Philosophy”<http://www.iep.utm.edu/c/camus.htm.> (October, 2007).

“SamuelBeckett,NobelWinnerArticle”<(http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literatu

re/laureates/1969/press.html>(October , 2007).

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