A Comparative Inter-modal Study
An attempt to present another critical study about the fiction of Witold Gombrowicz (1904–1969) and Samuel Beckett (1906–1989) virtually amounts to Benedykt Chmielowski’s description of a horse in one of the first Polish encyclopaedias: what a horse is like, is for everyone to see. It therefore seems reasonable to lament, “Oh no! Another book on Gombrowicz/Beckett?! Not again!” However, if such a negative attitude might make sense in a project dedicated solely to Gombrowicz or to Beckett, a project on both of them in one study is one never to have emerged before. Comparisons between both writers, usually in the context of their dramas, have been made, but in passing (for example see Gombrowicz nasz współczesny). Moreover, as can be seen from the above enumerations, “critical studies” of both seem to suffer from one “disease:” a relative deficiency in strictly formal inves-tigations. By formal I mean those which address the form and function of structure and composition of a particular work of prose fiction, not the examination of the notion of Gombrowiczan Form.