Beckett as Translator of Beckett: The Transmission of (Anti-?) Religious Concepts

  • John Gillespie
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Translating and Interpreting book series (PTTI)


Gillespie considers Samuel Beckett’s bilingual writing in both French and English, with and many of these works translated into the other language. He analyses Beckett’s approach to evaluative concepts in translation by looking at religious themes, concentrating on a detailed analysis of the scene of the two thieves at the crucifixion of Christ in En attendant Godot. He argues that the significant number of differences in the English translation reveal Beckett’s attitudes towards the values of religion more forcefully because English was an expression of his identity and his experience of them emerges in English, whereas those elements are less present in his writing in French. This analysis is then extended to some of Beckett’s other works translated into English and French as further evidence of the author’s approach to translation.


English Version Emotional Intensity Young Offender Christian Belief Religious Discourse 
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Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Gillespie
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Modern Languages, Arts and Humanities Research InstituteUlster UniversityNorthern IrelandUK

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