work

Scholarly articles:

This is a comparative study of Samuel Beckett’s Textes pour rien (1950, published 1958) and John Cage’s Lecture on Nothing (1949, published 1961). These two projects, each of which emblematizes the lifelong artistic pursuit of its creator, offer a glimpse at the affinity between the two creators themselves. This article examines these two works and their authors according to three axes: first, nothing and how it is defined and deployed in each author’s creation, with an emphasis on the function of the prepositions “on” and “for” used in each author’s title; second, silence, which, in both cases, serves an important function as one of nothing’s major phenomenological counterparts—notably in Cage’s subsequent composition 4’33” and in Beckett’s quest to suppress the narrative voice of subjectivity; third, noise, which I will claim is the paradoxical but determinant residue that results from each author’s search for nothing and for silence.”

“In this study, I examine the two histoires of Kamel Daoud’s Meursault, contre-enquête: two histories attached to two identities – French and Algerian – and two stories – Camus’s L’étranger and Daoud’s novel as a response to it. I do so through three connected attempts at unearthing. First, the unearthing of memory: I explore Daoud’s engagement with the buried past of the Algerian War of Independence and of his brother who was killed in Camus’s novel; I look at his narrative techniques for digging up this past, especially as they relate to the influence of Camus. After that, I turn to the unearthing of identity production; I suggest that identity is structurally determined, placing an emphasis on capitalist imperialism and on the purity that is presumed in the book as a form, in the French language, in the nation-state, and I discuss the role of each of their corresponding temporal regimes in the construction of an illusory homogeneous identity. Finally, I consider how this “unearthing” is made possible through an archeological approach to time in Daoud’s novel that stems from his narrator’s understanding of his positioning in a heterogeneous, hypermediatized and globalized world which, I contend, brings to light a long-dissimulated past and demystifies the representations of a so-called national identity that is in fact the pernicious fruit of imperialist social domination.”