Study Guide

Happy Days What's Up With the Title?

By Samuel Beckett

What's Up With the Title?

At first, the title Happy Days might conjure up images of the Fonz, or cute little animals prancing and skipping through a meadow. The trick with Beckett's play is irony. After all, the play is largely about one woman's unhappy day… or existence. The title itself comes from what you say when giving a toast: "to happy days"—a phrase that implies optimism and good wishes for the future, something that Winnie, our protagonist, would love to relate to except for the teeny weeny problem that she's buried in a mound and all her happy days seem to be behind her. As Alanis Morissette once said, "Isn't it ironic?"

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