About Us

Welcome to the Samuel Beckett Summer School

Group discussion at the 2015 Performance Workshop Presentation – and a group shot of the 2015 Beckett Summer School staff and students.

Samuel Beckett Summer School 2017
Sunday 30 July-Friday 4 August


Jonathan Bignell: Viscous Textures in Beckett’s Screen Work
Patrick Bixby: ‘To conceive of other worlds’: Beckett’s Strange Utopias
Rina Kim:  “dance first and think afterwards”: Embodied (Un)Consciousness in Beckett’s Drama
Trish McTighe: What Will Have Been: The Festival Beckett
Mariko Hori Tanaka: ‘Samuel Beckett and the Apocalyptic Imagination’
Erik Tonning: ‘Beckett beyond Tragedy: Christianity, Racine, and Play’

Roundtable: Beckett and Gender (chair: Trish McTigue)

Beckett and Irish History (Patrick Bixby)
Beckett and Christianity (Erik Tonning)
Beckett’s Manuscripts (Mark Nixon & Dirk Van Hulle)
Performance Workshop (Nicholas Johnson & Jonathan Heron)
Reading Group – Nohow On (Sam Slote)

Beckett Pub Quiz (Mark Nixon)

Performances to be announced shortly


Now in its seventh year, the Samuel Beckett Summer School provides a unique experience for students, scholars and lovers of Beckett’s works. Each year we invite the world’s foremost Beckett scholars to present new lectures and seminars on all aspects of Beckett’s works. The School appeals to a wide range of Beckett enthusiasts by providing the opportunity to experience, savour and study Beckett’s works in the university where he began his intellectual life.

The Summer School is different from an academic conference in that it is not purely a gathering by specialists for other specialists. Instead, we aim to engage and explore Beckett’s works from a variety of different perspectives in order to examine and re-examine Beckett’s evolving legacy and relevance. The aim of the Summer School is to look at Beckett in an open and pluralist fashion and to consider all of the numerous contexts of his work that are of interest both to the scholar and to the general reader.

The Samuel Beckett Summer School offers a full week of learning and is complemented by social and cultural events each evening.

Each morning will feature one or two lectures by leading Beckett scholars. In the afternoons we run our week-long seminars. Each student chooses one of four seminars and stays with that seminar for the full week. Seminars include: Beckett’s Manuscripts; a Reading Group (the specific texts may change each year); Performance Workshop; and at least one special seminar whose topic will change each year (past examples include ‘Beckett and Deleuze’, ‘Beckett and Dante’, and ‘Beckett and Irish Culture, 1929–1949’). The range of seminar topics is meant to reflect the diverse ways in which Beckett’s works can be approached, and are run by experts in those particular areas.

In addition to the academic programme, we offer a range of activities, including social events, performances, field trips, an opening reception and a closing banquet. We encourage all of our speakers to attend our social events and discuss Beckett in more informal settings. Some of our additional events are open to the public and some are exclusive to participants of the Summer School.

To view images from last year’s event, please visit our 2015 Beckett Summer School photos page.

Please email info@beckettsummerschool.com with enquiries.


“Now that the Summer dust has settled, I am writing to thank you for your great work with the Beckett School, and for the wonderful opportunity you set up for my students. I have been in touch with [both of my students] recently, and I can tell they are still riding a joyous wave after their experience in Dublin. It is safe to say that this was a defining event in their academic careers, and, judging by their passion for Beckett, a defining event in their life. I should add that they were both genuinely impressed by the quality of the lectures and the seminars (in particular Caselli´s seminar), and greatly enjoyed all the other para-academic activities (trips, exhibits, dinners, etc.). You probably know it already, but it never hurts to be told: this school is a great thing, and you ought to be proud.”

– Ruben Borg, Lecturer in English Literature, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2013

“The strength of the Samuel Beckett Summer School lies in its variety. How it approaches its subject, the diversity of opinions I encountered in one week at Trinity, the people I met. It is a foundation for those who are studying Beckett for the first time, or another step up for those who may be more familiar with him. I left with a new image of Beckett, one that had him as not solely Irish, but because of the people I had met and the lessons I had learned, but one that was international as well”

– Andrew McEwan, student at the Samuel Beckett Summer School 2012

“The Summer School offered a sensitively designed, busy programme with many complementary strains. […] By the end of the week, somewhere between exhaustion and elation, Friday’s banquet provided an enjoyable and very tasty end to the week’s activities. This year’s Summer School is a testament to the many die-hard Beckett enthusiasts who eagerly participated in what was a marathon week in Dublin”

– Georgina Nugent-Folan, The Beckett Circle, 2012

(Click here to read the Georgina Nugent-Folan review of the 2012 Samuel Beckett Summer School from the Autumn 2012 issue of The Beckett Circle)

The Beckett Summer School is a project of the School of English and the School of Drama, Film and Music at Trinity College Dublin. It is housed on campus at the Trinity Long Room Hub Arts and Humanities Research Institute.

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