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Endgame

Endgame

by Samuel Beckett

Isolation Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

HAMM
Me—
(he yawns)
—to play.
(He holds the handkerchief spread out before him.)
Old stancher! (1.2)

Why does Hamm have this particular fondness for his handkerchief throughout the play (it comes back at the end)? How has the handkerchief becomes like a companion for him? What do these first words mean? Why is it "me" and not "us"? What does this say about how self-reliant Hamm is?

Quote #2

HAMM
Why do you stay with me?
CLOV
Why do you keep me?
HAMM
There's no one else.
CLOV
There's nowhere else.
HAMM
You're leaving me all the same.
CLOV
I'm trying. (1.36-41)

Is this companionship based on the lack of possibilities even more isolating than solitude? What is more lonely – being trapped with someone that you want to leave or being left alone because there is no one that you want to be with?

Quote #3

HAMM
In your kitchen?
CLOV
Yes.
HAMM
Outside of here it's death. (1.74-76)

How does the physical space play a role in their isolation? If they want things to end, then is death such a bad thing? Is the fact that staying in the house is part of their failure to end that makes them act so miserably toward each other? What do the characters fear more: death or isolation?

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