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“Krapp’s Last Tape”: A Study of the Impact of Language upon Identity

Sarah Moseley
Ohio Northern University

The essay “‘Krapp’s Last Tape’: A Study of the Impact of Language upon Identity” explores the relationship that Krapp, of the play “Krapp’s Last Tape” by Samuel Beckett, has with himself. Throughout the play, Krapp attempts to reshape his identity by his use of language. Krapp wants to eliminate emotional ties and intimacy from his life in the present and in the past by editing his life as he listens to his yearly reflections on tape. Through eliminating the past’s relevance, Krapp hopes to make himself content with his present status. By applying Speech Act theory to “Krapp’s Last Tape,” the essay investigates Krapp’s efforts and explains their result: Krapp’s misery.

ONU Student Research Colloquium