Till Day You Do Part, or A Question of Light
Described as an answer to or at least an echo of Samuel Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape, Peter Handke’s play Till Day You Do Part, or A Question of Light is a monologue delivered by the “she” in Beckett’s play. This unnamed female recalls other significant women protagonists in Handke’s own work such as The Left-handed Woman. Handke prefaces the monologue in Till Day You Do Part with a description of two stone figures. While the male figure remains “as dead and gone as anyone can,” the female bursts into life, and her monologue gradually focuses on Krapp’s use of pauses and language to dominate the other characters in the Beckett play. Ultimately, however, her complaints and critique of Krapp become a declaration of her love for Krapp or at least an affirmation of their attachment, as the two of them are ultimately bound together, perhaps even inseparable.
Till Day You Do Part is Handke at his best, evidencing the great skill, psychological acumen, and vision for which his work has been celebrated.
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