I’m sorry to be once again discussing Lucky’s speech. But I was reading Theatre in Spain, 1490 – 1700 (really good), and I came upon a sentence that talked about the sine qua non of the theater. It means literally “without which not” or more or less “an essential element.”
That means that “qua” means “which” or “as” or “the character of.” Aha!
Lucky’s speech starts:
Now it seems pretty obvious what Beckett meant here: a personal God which has the character of a white beard and the character of being outside the bounds of time.
My only question: if this is so obvious, why have I never read anyone discussing it, even as one possible explanation. It could be that it is just too obvious. Or it could be that academics don’t give the word much thought because they don’t have to. And actors don’t give it much thought because they aren’t pedants.
But I feel better now.