21.1.11

Literary Mentorships: James Joyce and Samuel Beckett

Flavorwire lists their top ten literary mentorships
James Joyce (left) and Samuel Beckett (right)
Flavorwire select their top ten literary mentorships, including Ralph Ellison, William Faulkner, Ezra Pound, T. S. Eliot, Joyce Carol Oates and more. This is what they have to say about James Joyce and Samuel Beckett:
After being introduced by a mutual colleague, Samuel Beckett befriended the renowned Ulysses author and served as his assistant on research for what would later become Finnegans Wake. Beckett was displeased, however, by how much his writing was reminiscent of Joyce. In a letter to him, Beckett observes about an early poem, “Of course it stinks of Joyce in spite of most earnest endeavors to endow it with my own colors.” This led the celebrated playwright to find a literary voice by creating one in opposition to his mentor’s. “James Joyce was a synthesizer, trying to bring in as much as he could,” Beckett once said. “I am an analyzer, trying to leave out as much as I can.” [Read more]

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