Art and the Female in Youth: Between Joyce and Beckett

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter investigates the relation between the figure of the female, sex and the production of art in Coetzee’s Youth by placing the fictionalised memoire within the intertextual framework of James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Samuel Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape. Stewart explores the dynamic between art and the female figure wherein the female is portrayed as a gateway to artistic expression at the same time as a threat to artistic autonomy. Via Joyce and Beckett, Stewart demonstrates how Coetzee stages the question of how one can have an authentic and aesthetic relation to an actual woman when notions of authenticity are already informed by the weight of male literary tradition and its figuration of the female.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationReading Coetzee's Women
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783030197773
ISBN (Print)9783030197766
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Aesthetics
  • Beckett
  • Coetzee
  • Female representation
  • Joyce


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