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Happy Days

Samuel Beckett
  • Study Guide
Main Ideas

Key Facts

Main Ideas Key Facts

full title Happy Days

author Samuel Beckett

type of work Drama

genre Absurdist drama/comedy

language English

time and place written Paris, early 60s

date of first production New York, 1961

publisher Grove Press

narrator No narrator; drama

climax The climax occurs when Winnie sings her song after Willie crawls out to meet her

protagonist Winnie

antagonist The environment, time, and, to a lesser extent, Willie

setting (time) Modern day

setting (place) A piece of earth in the middle of nowhere

point of view The audience sides with Winnie, who speaks the bulk of the play's lines

falling action Winnie and Willie stare at each other in silence

tense Play; present tense

foreshadowing Winnie expresses eagerness for death and she also frequently alludes to the song, which she likes to sing before sleep

tone Absurdly comic, philosophical

themes Loneliness and the Need for Companionship; Stasis Masquerading as Change; Failure and Emptiness of Language

motifs Approach of Death

symbols Black Bag