WAITING FOR GODOT TEXT PDF
Waiting for Godot tragicomedy in 2 acts. By. Samuel Beckett. Estragon. Vladimir. Lucky. Pozzo a boy. ACT I. A country road. A tree. Evening. Estragon, sitting on. olhon.info On Food and Cooking Harold Mcgee. Absurd, Grotesque, and Meaningless Meanings in Waiting for Godot. II, Apr-Jun ISSN: WAITING FOR GODOT: A DISPARATE TEXT Javed Akhter M Phil Scholar Department of English Literature and Linguistics.
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Waiting for Godot Act 1 and Act 2 Full Text olhon.info File Size: kb. File Type: pdf. Waiting for Godot; for these could hardly be the dramatist's .. of the text. Thus Vladimir and Estragon, in presentational fashion, stage the tramp condition of an . PDF | This paper tends to focus on the different facets and meanings of „‟Waiting for Godot‟‟ by Samuel Beckett. The different occurrences of.
The character must be established long before he even speaks a word. He is known by his actions and the little that Pozzo says about him. Lucky should be thin.
He gets only bones to eat. He should be tall so that he will look frail and awkward. As a symbol of enslavement Lucky is really ageless.
See a Problem?
He should look old but not old as an ordinary person gets old. Since much of the time Lucky is not contributing directly to the scene he needs good power of concentration to stay in his own character all the time.
Because of the nature of the character in- volved Lucky does not need to be in the scene, but of the scene. When he is not the center of attention he is sleeping and pays no attention to the action around him. It was a grotesque dance which mainly required that the actor believe in his part and not feel awkward doing the dance. It would be very easy for an actor to ruin this whole part by feeling "silly" about doing it.
Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot
This would make the audience uncomfortable. It is easy to picture Pozzo as a tall heavy man with a bombastic manner. This sort of person would make a meaningful contrast with the underfed Lucky. It is not always possible to find the physical type coupled with the acting quality desired. When it is necessary to make a choice this director prefers to sacrifice type easting.
An alternate idea would be to cast a small person in the part of Pozzo and play up the ludicrous effect of having a small man order a large man around. Pozzo must be played on at least three different levels. On a very superficial level he sometimes tries to seem sensitive but this characteristic shows in nothing but some poetry-like phrases and some grand gestures.
At these times he speaks lyrically. He shows a false faith in beauty and truth. The second character shown by Pozzo is an ordinary sort of person. He speaks in prose and uses common language.
The third facet of this character is the extreme opposite of the first. This last change shows a very gross person with no insight or sentiment. He is a pessimist. The Boy.. This character should be as youthful looking as possible.
He is young and scared. His main characteristic is unsureness. This unsureness gives him a larger than ordinary desire to please.
But the very nature of his task makes it impossible for him to please. He must always impart the knowledge that Godot is not coming today. General Comments. There is little need to see growth of character in this production. The characters come on the stage and leave it with little change in their characters. This is a part of the play. It is intended to be this way.
Quotes and Themes from Waiting for Godot
Pozzo is the only character who changes. Even though he goes blind he still retains the three character levels. He uses the middle character more often but he is still lyrical and demanding in turn.
The cast was asked to approach the realization of their characters in a different way than is the usual form. They should not try to imagine these characters as real live people who existed at some particular place. They should not try to know their characters as specific people. They were asked to be characters rather than to make characters. None of them were to try to realize their particular character in any other place except on the hill surrounded by the bog.
Their ages were not even specific though the script indicated that they were about sixty years old. All members of the cast met the challenge of this technique with evenly distributed amounts of talent. Costumes Costumes for this show presented few problems. There was considerable freedom of choice in this area. Some productions have been done in rags and some have been done in evening dress. A middle ground was chosen in planning the costume plot for this play.
Care of the costumes was simplified since Estragon, Lucky, and Vladimir need to look quite rumpled.
The other two characters needed to only hang up their costumes at night. This character wore a black suit which was much too large for him. This gave him a rumpled look and emphasized the contrast between him and the neater Vladimir.
The large pants came off easier in the final scene. The temperature in the theatre was above comfort level and since Estragon didn't have to remove his suit coat he wore a short sleeved white shirt. He wore huge, black, laceless combat boots and a wildly colored tie as well as wildly colored shorts.
The outfit was topped off with a shabby black bowler hat. This character's suit was salt and pepper colored.
It fit fairly well and was not as wrinkled as was Estragon 's.
It was double breasted and extra pockets were sewn into it to accommodate all the radishes, turnips, string and carrots necessary.
A long sleeved white shirt was worn under the suit coat. Vladimir carried a white pocket hand- kerchief, wore an ugly tie and a black bowler hat. His shoes were brown. Lucky wore a dark blue gabardine suit and a grey shirt with a tie equally as bad as those worn by the other two characters. The pants of the suit were pulled high and fastened with suspenders to emphasize his height. He wore white gloves on his hands. In the first act he wore a black bowler hat which he left on the stage.
He wore a gray hat in the second act. Pozzo wore yellow jodpers with a white shirt and grey riding jacket. He wore huge riding boots which helped him with his character- ization since they forced a walk which was distinctive. He wore a padded belt around his middle to make him look heavier. It was necessary to have two shirts for this character.
He wore a clean shirt the first act and changed to a dirty one for the second act. The 27 brown riding boots were left off in the second act in order to achieve greater mobility and to protect the expensive boots.
The Boy. In order to help him look younger the boy needed a costume that could be directly associated with youth. He was attired in tan knickers with white stockings and a yellow and blue shirt with a small bow tie. The pants were pulled up high and held with beige suspenders in an attempt to make him look younger.
Make-up The characters of Vladimir and Estragon were deliberately made up with the idea that they should, as far as possible, resemble Charlie Chaplin. This decision was made with the backing of many authorities. The writers of The Testament of Samuel Beckett agree that, "It is the comedy of the circus, of vaudeville, the comedy whose essence has perhaps been most perfectly captured by Charlie Chaplin. It has been suggested that Godot is a weakened form of the word "God," a diminutive formed on the analogy of Pierre-Pierrot, Charles-Chariot, with the added association of the Charlie Chaplin character of the little man, who is called Chariot in France, and whose bowler hat is worn by all four main characters in the play.
The script used in this production specifically states that all four Jacobsen, p. The director of this production deliberately wanted to capture the "little man against the world" quality in the characters of Vladimir and Estragon. She went to a number of Chaplin movies. The most impressive of Chaplin's characteristics outside of his actions were his large eyes set in a rather palid face. With this in mind she planned the make-up for Vladimir and Estragon.
Both men wore a very light base, Max Factor grease paint number J-. Since some ageing was needed both characters shadowed the hollows of their faces with dark brown shadow. They then used brown liner for lines and white liner for highlights. Vladimir used the shadows to give his face a narrow look.
He shadowed the inner corner of his eye lids to make his eyes look close together. Estragon worked to give his face a heavy appearance. He emphasized his jaw line. Both men used a heavy line of brown-black liquid eyeliner around their eyes to make them appear more prominent.
This was done after then had powdered the rest of their make-up to set it. The eyeliner was particularly effective on Vladimir.
Their make-up was completed by whiting their badly rumpled hair with white shoe polish. Estragon had a red spot on his leg where Lucky is supposed to have kicked him. Red shadow was used for this and it was sealed with collodion. Pozzo's make-up was planned on the basis that he was the outdoor type and therefore his skin would be darkened by the sun. This would make a nice contrast with the other two paler men. He used Max Factor grease paint number 8.
He used brown liner to create wrinkles. He then used white liner for highlights.. In this case the eyeliner was used to give his eyes a cruel look.
This was to emphasize a more 29 harsh character. To do this the liner was put very thinly over the top of the eye but drawn out to a point at the corner of the eye.
Pozzo's hair was neatly combed and slightly grayed. Lucky presented a particular problem. The slightly stylized presentation of the character and the unnaturalistic actions required of him left a good deal of freedom in the interpretation of the make-up. He was old, he was in ill health and he didn't seem quite human.
The make-up finally decided on was a clown white base with stylized shadows in gray. Because his trousers were rolled slightly it was necessary to cover his ankles with clown white and use gray shadow to make him look more gaunt.
It seemed impractical to use make-up on his hands for he had to use them too much and the color would rub off on the things he carried.
He wore white gloves insteak. There was a special make-up job to create a mean looking sore on Lucky' s neck. Nose putty was used and it was colored with red shadow and sealed with collodion.
Lucky's hair, which was fairly long, was whitened with shoe polish and then ratted to make it bush out. It was sprayed heavily with hair spray to make it stay in place. Straight make-up was used on the boy. Care was taken to emphasize his already boyish face by using Max Factor grease paint number 7A, blue eye shadow and very rosy cheeks.
It could be done in many different styles and be as elaborate or simple as desired by the director. Since the production was chosen by the director partly because of the possibility of simplicity in stage setting there was no major decision about how elaborate to make the setting.
It should be as simple as possible and still contribute to the mood of the play. The script calls for only two necessary elements in the stage setting. It is absolutely necessary to have a tree. The tree is the most important focal point on the stage. There are many references to it during the play, both directly and indirectly. In his chapter on Beckett found in Dionysus in Paris. Wallace Fowlie calls the tree, ". The stage is bare, suggesting a stark and empty universe. The only hint of nature is a skeletic tree, which at once recalls a gallows, a cross both instruments of torture and religious symbol , and the various trees of mythical literature.
Though the script mentions that the tree is possibly a willow no one is ever quite sure just what it is. The range of styles could vary Wallace Fowlie, Dionysus in Paris. New York, I , p. Both of these extremes were rejected as not contributing to the mood desired in this production.
The use of a real tree would suggest that the action was occurring at a real location rather than just anywhere or everywhere. Fowlie says, "The place is anyplace. The use of a specifically stated symbol such as a cross would be deliberately pointing to a narrower interpretation than the director had in mind. One of the first speeches by Vladimir seems to show the religous significance possible.
He says, "The last moment.. Hope deferred maketh the something sick, who said that? It reads, "Hope deferred maketh the heart sick but when the desire cometh it is a tree of life. Some interpretation of a tree somewhere between these two had to be found. There were two ways to obtain a tree. One could be built or one could be found which was already constructed or grown.
The technical difficulties and budget ruled out constructing a frame for the tree and covering this frame. The director went in search of a tree which looked like it should not have grown.
A tree was finally found which had branches at the desired angles. The unwanted branches were cut off and the whole tree cut down to size. If the branches had not been cut down the heigth of the tree would have -i x Fowlie, p. The stubs of the branches were sharpened to painful points. The first impulse of the director had been to paint the tree the same color as the floor and use paint to add an unrealistic look by the use of highlights and shadows.
After the points were sharpened the white tree made such a nice contrast that instead of painting the tree the rest of the bark was stripped off. The final effect was impressionistic. Impressionism reduces the number of details used to create a complete picture and simplifies them more than they would be in real life.
The tree finally developed could be viewed as a mangled cross, a dead tree of life or just an odd willow. One cast member likened it to a hand reaching up in a pleading gesture but ready to bend down and destroy. The tree was a movable piece. It was maintained in its upright position by means of a three inch screw drilled through a 2' by 2' by 1" piece of plywood and straight up into the base of the tree. This did not make a very stable tree for the size of the base prohibited use of more than one screw.
After the green tree began to dry it split at the base and it became apparent that such an arrangement would not have lasted for a very long run of the show.
The tree in all its simplicity was still the most interesting aspect of the very simple stage set. The mound was constructed by securing a step unit to the stage floor at the appropriate place and covering the unit with chicken wire.
This made a completely solid unit that would bear the weight of two men. It was also very economical since it eliminated the necessity of building a new mound and the step unit was not harmed by the use. The wire was padded in the places most used by the two A3 main characters and then the entire unit was covered with canvas dipped in size water. When this was dry the entire mound was painted the same black color as the back wall. This made a sturdy servicable mound that went well with the tree.
The objects were placed one on each side of the stage so that a balanced picture would be presented. This arrangement allowed motivated moves to both sides of the stage and left space in the favored center stage position for the more important scenes. This setting did not have any elements which would attract the eye for long. The success of the venture would depend upon the acting and blocking. The main deficiency of this set was the lack of levels. There were five levels that could be achieved by the actors on this stage.
They could stand on the mound, sit on the mound, stand on the floor or lie on the floor. When Pozzo and Lucky enter they bring with them a folding stool which provided another variety in the levels, fill five levels were used. Color The basic colors for the set were decided long before the stage was set. The posters were made'of brown paper and had black and green lettering.
This gave a drab yet interesting effect that seemed to fit the mood of the play so these colors were used for the stage set. The best arrangement seemed to be to paint the floor dark brown. This would give the impression of a muddy, dirty hill but it would be in no w a y realistic. The paint used on the floor was a mixture of burnt sienna pigment with some whiting added to dull the tone so that footprints would not show up badly on the floor.
This pigment was a then thoroughly mixed with alcohol. Then shellac was added to keep the paint from rubbing off like ordinary scene paint is likely to do. The first coat failed to cover and came off on the clothing of the actors. This was caused by the poor condition of the platforms which made the stage and the fact that there was not enough shellac in the paint mixture.
The floor was painted with a better proportioned mixture and the second time the paint stayed on. The back wall had originally been painted black. To repaint it any other color but black would have meant that it would have to be changed back to black as soon as the show was over.
The cost of repainting would have to be included in the budget. It was therefore extremely convenient to decide that the back wall would be best painted black. This did fit perfectly into the color scheme. The mound was painted the same color as the back wall. This made it stand out against the brown floor but the contrast was not startling or distracting. Since the paint used was flat black enamel it did not rub off on the clothing of the actors. With the brown and black in the background the white tree became the most prominent feature on the empty stage.
At intermission three green leaves were hung on the lower branches of the tree by means of small wires. The leaves were made out of bright green paper and painted with yellow streaks. The spectacle of the setting was not supposed to be one of the major attractions of the production. The director was interested in how the audience would react to this stark presentation. The director was mainly interested in the ideas present in the play and in the acting and directing necessary to present these ideas with as few theatrical 45 aids as possible.
The main thing required from the stage setting would be that it not detract from the mood of the play or distract the audience in any way. The final setting fit these qualifications to the satisfaction of the director. The tone desired was not one of sunshine and light. It is just before dusk and fairly cold. The second part of each act takes place after nightfall.
There were nine instruments used for each separate scene. All the instruments for one scene were controlled by one dimmer. The day lights were on the right side of the light board while the night lights were controlled from the left side of the board. Each set of lights was composed of two six-inch ellipsodial reflector spot lights and seven six-inch Fresnels.
All the Fresnels had watt T medium prefocus base lamps in them and the lekos had watt T medium prefocus base lamps. All gelatin numbers were from Brigham Gelatin, Inc. The colors used for the day light scene were straw number 54, steel blue number 29 and special lavender number This made a basically cool light.
The night scene was created with special lavender number 17, steel blue number 29 and medium blue number One special was used at the opening of the first act. It was a six-inch Fresnel with a straw gelatin. It was operated independently from the other two sets of instruments. The lighting changes for this show were very simple. There is a cross-fade to the night lights near the end of the act. There is another cross-fade near 58 the end of the second act. Since each set of instruments could be controlled from one dimmer these changes were very simple.
Pozzo gives a horrible cry off right. Lucky drops his baggage off left. Lucky kicks the baggage around and picks it up off left. Lucky drops baggage and Pozzo stamps feet off left.
I During the five count blackout Estragon takes his place on the mound. The rest of the stage lights for day come up as he speaks this first line. Vladimir enters.
It is a sort of a shuffle. Vladimir I 'm beginning to come round to that opinion. He faces out to the audience. All my life I've tried to put it from me, saying, Vladimir, be reasonable, you haven't yet tried everything. He shrugs his shoulders. And I resume the struggle. He turns to Estragon delightedly.
So there you are again. Estragon Am I? Vladimir I 'm glad to see you back. I thought you were gone forever. Estragon Me too. He turns away from Estragon. But how? He turns to Estragon with outstretched arms. Get up til I embrace you. Estragon irritably Not now, not now.
Vladimir crosses behind mound to left of Estragon. Vladimir coldly May one inquire where his — Highness spent the night? Estragon In a ditch.
Vladimir admiringly A ditch J Where? Estragon without gesture Over there. Vladimir And they didn't beat you? Estragon Beat me?
Certainly they beat me. Vladimir The same lot as usual? Estragon continuing the struggle with his boot The same? I don't know. Vladimir When I think of it He looks decisively at Estragon. You'd be nothing more than a little heap of bones at the present minute, no doubt about it. Vladimir gloomily It's too much for one man. He pauses, then says cheerfully. On the other hand what's the good of losing heart now, that's what 7 say.
We should have thought of it a million years ago, in the nineties. Estragon indicating his boot Ah stop blathering and help me off with this bloody thing. Vladimir Hand in hand from the top of the Eiffel Tower, among the first.
He crosses down center talking to himself. We were respectable in those days. Now it's too late. They wouldn't even let us up. He notices the struggles of Estragon. What are you doing? Estragon Taking off my boot. Did that never happen to you? Vladimir scolding Boots must be taken off every day, I'm tired telling you that. Why don't you listen to me? Estragon feebly Help me J Vladimir It hurts?
Estragon angrily to audience Hurts. I don't count. I'd like to hear what you'd say if you had what I have. Estragon It hurts? He wants to know if it hurts i Estragon pointing to Vladimir's fly You might zip it all the same. Vladimir looking True. He zips his fly. Never neglect the little things of life. Estragon What do you expect, you always wait til the last moment. Vladimir musing as he moves down left The last moment He meditates. Estragon struggling with his boot Why don't you help me?
Vladimir Sometimes I feel it coming all the same. Then I go all peculiar. He takes off his hat, peers inside it, feels about inside it, shakes it, puts it on again. How shall I say? Relieved and at the same time appalled. He takes off his hat again, peers inside it. He knocks on the crown as though to dislodge a foreign body, peers into it again, puts it on again. Estragon with a supreme effort succeeds in pulling off his boot. He peers inside it, feels about inside it, turns it upside down, shakes it, looks on the ground to see if anything hss fallen out, finds nothing, feels inside it again.
Vladimir Try and put it on again. Estragon fans his foot with his boot Estragon I'll air it for a bit. Vladimir There's man all over for you, blaming on his boot the faults of his feet. He takes off his hat again, peers inside it, feels about inside it, knocks on the crown, blows into it, puts it on again.
This is getting alarming. Vladimir deep in thought crosses down left and faces front. Estragon wiggles his toes.
One of the thieves was saved. Vladimir pauses. Estragon contemplates his toes. It's a reasonable percentage. He pauses again. Estragon What? Repented what? We wouldn't have to go into the details.
Estragon Our being born? Vladimir breaks into a hearty laugh which he immediately stifles, his hand pressed to his pubis, his face contorted. Vladimir One daren't even laugh any more. Estragon Dreadful privation. Vladimir Merely smile.
He smiles suddenly from ear to ear, keeps smiling, ceases as suddenly. It's not the same thing. He pauses.
Estragon irritably What is it? Vladimir Did you ever read the Bible? Estragon The Bible I must have taken a look at it. Vladimir turning toward Estragon Do you remember the Gospels? Estragon I remember the maps of the Holy Land. Coloured they were.
Very pretty. The Dead Sea was pale blue. The very look of it made me thirsty. That's where we'll go, I used to say, that's where we'll go for our honeymoon. We'll swim. We'll be happy. Vladimir You should have been a poet. Isn't that obvious?
There is a silence. Vladimir Where was I How 'b your foot? Estragon looking at his foot attentively Swelling visibly. Vladimir Ah yes, the two thieves. Do you remember the story? Estragon No. Vladimir Shall I tell it to you? Vladimir It'll pass the time. He crosses behind Estragon Two thieves, crucified at the same time as our Saviour. One — Estragon Our what? Vladimir Our Saviour. Two thieves. One is supposed to have been saved and the other damned.
Saved from what? Estragon Hell. Vladimir I 'm going Estragon He does not move. Vladimir And yet He turns to Estragon and moves a few steps down left. Come on, Gogo, return the ball, can't you, once in a while? Estragon with exaggerated enthusiasm I find this really most extraordinarily interesting. Vladimir One out of four. He turns away and crosses down left. Of the other three two don't mention any thieves at all and the third says that both of them abused him.
Estragon Who? Vladimir What? Estragon What's all this about? Abused who? Vladimir The Saviour. Estragon Why? Vladimir Because he wouldn't save them. Estragon From hell? Vladimir Imbecile! From death. Estragon I thought you said from hell. Vladimir From death, from death. Estragon Well, wh 8 t of it? Vladimir Then the two of them must have been damned. Estragon Well? Vladimir But all four were there. He crosses to center stage. Estragon Who believes him?
Vladimir Everybody. It's the only version they know. Estragon People are bloody ignorant apes! He rises painfully, goes limping to extreme left, halts, gazes into distance off with his hand screening his eyes, turns, goes to extreme right, gazes into distance.
Vladimir watches him, then goes and picks up the boot, peers into it, gets a whiff and drops it hastily. Vladimir Pah. His back is toward the audience. Estragon Charming spot. He turns and looks at the audience. Inspiring prospects.
He turns to Vladimir. Let's go. Vladimir We're waiting for Godot. You're sure it was here? He starts to cross toward Estragon. Estragon That we were to wait.
Vladimir He said by the tree.
He crosses to the left of the tree and looks at it. Do you see any others? Estragon What is it? A willow. Where are the leaves? It must be dead. No more weeping. Estragon Looks to me more like a bush. Vladimir A shrub. Estragon A bush. Vladimir A— He crosses behind the tree to Estragon. That we've come to the wrong place?
Estragon turning smugly toward audience He should be here. Vladimir He didn't say for sure he'd come. Estragon And if he doesn't come? Vladimir We'll come back to-morrow. Estragon And then the day after to-morrow. Vladimir Possibly. Estragon And so on. Vladimir starts to cross to in front of the mound.
Vladimir The point is. Estragon cuts him off quickly. Estragon Until he comes. Vladimir turns to Estragon. Vladimir You're merciless. Estragon We came here yesterday. Vladimir Ah no, there you're mistaken Estragon What did we do yesterday? Vladimir What did we do yesterday? Estragon Yes. He turns and shuffles angrily to the front of the stage. Nothing is certain when you're about. Estragon In my opinion we were here. Vladimir looking around You recognize the place? Estragon I didn't say that.
Vladimir Well? Estragon That makes no difference. Vladimir All the same. He indicates the audience. That bog Estragon You're sure it was this evening? Vladimir He said Saturday. He hesitates. I think. Vladimir I must have made a note of it. He fumbles in his pockets, bursting with miscellaneous rubbish.
And is it Saturday? Is it not rather Sunday? He pauses to let this sink home. Or Monday? Or Friday? Vladimir looking wildly about him It 's not possible; Estragon driving the point in Or Thursday?
Vladimir wildly What' 11 we do? Estragon If he came yesterday and we weren't here you may be sure he won't come again to-day. Vladimir But you say we were here yesterday. Estragon I may be mistaken. He crosses to the mound and sits down on it. Let's stop talking for a minute, do you mind? Vladimir feebly All right.
Estragon falls asleep with his head on his knees and his hands locked around his ankles. Vladimir paces agitatedly from down right to down center twice. Gogoi He paces back to the center. Gogol He looks at Estragon and then goes over and shakes him awake. Gogoi 73 Estragon reawakened to the horror of his situation I was asleep! He is despairing and angry. Why will you never let me sleep? Vladimir poutingly I felt lonely.
Estragon I had a dream. Vladimir Don't tell mei Estragon gesturing toward the universe This one is enough for you? It's not nice of you, Didi. Who am I to tell my private nightmares to if I can't tell them to you? Vladimir turning away from Estragon Let them remain private. You know I can't bear that. Estragon coldly There are times when I wonder if it wouldn't be better for us to part. Estragon That would be too bad, really too bad. Wouldn't it, Didi, be really too bad?
He pauses again but there is no reply. When you think of the beauty of the way. Still there is no reply. He is wheedling. Wouldn't it, Didi? Vladimir Calm yourself. Estragon voluptuously Calm The English say oawm. He pauses and chuckles to himself. You know the story of the Englishman in the brothel? Vladimir Yes. Estragon Vladimir turning toward Estragon Ah stop it. Estragon highly amused An Englishman having drunk a little more than usual proceeds to a brothel. The bawd asks him if he wants a fair one, a dark one or a red-haired one.
He is overcome by laughter. Go on. Stop it; Vladimir Vladimir exits hurriedly. Estragon gets up and follows him to the door. Gestures of Estragon are like those of a spectator encouraging a pugilist. He brushes past Estragon and crosses to down left.
He is hurt and angry. Estragon takes a step toward hiir and stops. He doesn't yet realize what is wrong with Vladimir. Estragon curiously You wanted to speak to me? There is silence. Estragon takes a step forward. The movement has its close affinities with existentialist philosophy and its theme of absurdity. Absurdity is one of the main themes of existentialism as well as of the Theatre of the Absurd movement.
Therefore, its main theme is also absurdity. The play describes existentialist philosophy and its absurdity. It possesses overall feeling of absurdity while simultaneously expresses many other themes of existentialism. Absurd is in fact an existentialist term, which describes existence-a world without inherent meaning of truth.
The two tramps Estragon and Vladimir wait for Godot, whom they do not know and they claim to be acquaintance with him but in fact, they hardly know him. They also admit that they will not recognize him when they see him. At the opening scene of the play, Estragon is struggling to remove his boots from his feet. And I resumed the struggle. He broods, musing on the struggle. The sense of absurdity makes the tramps incapable of doing anything.
Therefore, they cannot do anything. They intend to commit suicide but fail to do so due to their inactiveness and passivity to any action.
The notion of the absurd is commonly considered as equal to that of meaningless. For this reason, the question is wrong: the absurd does not necessarily equal to the meaninglessness but it may be in itself meaningful proposition. They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it is night once more. He jerks the rope. Beckett, Samuel, , Act Two, p. It is the most striking example that reflects obliteration in total despair and angst of the characters, which are most fully embody the normal human aspirations towards significance.
When Estragon and Vladimir are revealed that Godot is not coming this morning, they intend to commit suicide, expressing their despair and angst, which is pervasive throughout the play. II, Apr-Jun ISSN: words, the scientists have suggested that all acts are meaningless, in the context of a meaningless time and space.
While, the philosophers, the logical positivists and others have shown that however, intriguing languages may be considered as pure sound, it also is fundamentally meaningless and arbitrary when considered as a means to the knowledge of reality. As a result, the play presents disparity between words and action of the characters. For example, Estragon and Vladimir think to commit suicide, but they fail to do so because of their incapability of any action.
Vladimir: We will hang ourselves tomorrow. Unless Godot come. Estragon: And if he comes? We can mostly notice their incapability to do anything through the play. Vladimir: With what? Vladimir: No. Estragon: Oh wait, there is my belt. Estragon: You could hang on to my legs. Vladimir: And who would hang onto mine?
Similarly, we may notice the disparity between words and incapability of any action of the characters throughout the play.
They inertly wait for Godot instead of finding him out. By the end of the play, they want to go but they cannot move. Vladimir and Estragon act if one realizes that the words themselves are meaningless, and consequently, that existence, which they create, is meaningless.
Samuel Beckett is following a lonely trail of paradoxes in his search for the ultimate silence of the self-transcending both acts and language, which shall be the starting point of new existence-a rebirth beyond the limits of time and space. Existentialist philosophers are not expected any change in human situation.
The loss of identity or misrecognition of human beings is an important theme of existentialism. Vladimir and Estragon are identified by the nicknames as Didi and Gogo. The boy, messenger calls Vladimir as Mr Albert. In fact, these characters have no personality, they scarcely exists as characters, save in their words.
In addition, if their words are meaningless at the centre of themselves, is additionally meaningless even in their pretences at existence. The most important existentialist theme of the play is Kierkegaardian view of throwness into being in infinite universe. Pozzo shows his awareness of this existentialist conviction.
Vladimir and Estragon signify a profound misunderstanding, absurdity, and uncertainty of waiting. It reveals conflicting, disparate and contradictory meanings within the text and between the text and its ideological content.
However, Samuel Beckett tries to create a logo in the symbol of Godot whom the tramps wait. However, Godot does not make his appearance in the play. Nevertheless, many critics are still hopeful of his coming. Who or what Godot stands for? This question remains insoluble from beginning to the end in the play. The critics make different interpretations of the logo-centred Godot in a variety of ways.
Some critics suggest the meaning of God as inaccessible Godot. On the contrary, some other critics interpret it death, some kind of future utopia and national liberation. Catherine Belsey said that ideology is engraved in each and every utterance and use of language but there are some other signifying systems of the social formation also where its presence can be traced easily: common sense, everyday behaviours mores and folkways, myths, social gestures and routine truisms are relevant signs in this regard Belsey, Catherine,, pp.
The following dialogues between Vladimir and Estragon reflect the use of the sign of doubt, which is ideological construct. Estragon: The Bible… He reflects. I must have taken a look at it. Vladimir: Do you remember the Gospels? Estragon: I remember the maps of the Holy Land.
Coloured they were. Very pretty. The Dead Sea was pale blue. The very look of it made me thirsty. Vladimir: Ah yes, the two thieves. Do you remember the story? Estragon: No. Vladimir: Shall I tell it to you? Two thieves, crucified at the same time as our saviour. Estragon: Out what? Vladimir: Our saviour. Two thieves. One is supposed to have been saved and the other….
Estragon: Saved from what? Vladimir: Hell. The late modernist bourgeois ideology shattered the religious beliefs of modern man. In the feudal era, religion was an ideological practice, which played its significant role to recruit the subjects in a specific power apparatus, and at the same time, it strengthened the other powerful ideological signifying practices.
In modern era of capitalism, religion was replaced by doubt, reason, and Godless ideology. Existential absurdity of human existence is one of the ideological basics of the text.
The vertical repression and layering or sedimentation is dominant structure of the text of the play. Existential myth about the meaning of life and absurdity of human existence is ideological context of the play.
In this way, it shows many themes of existentialism of which absurdity and futility evidently found their source in Nietzschean nihilism, what kinds of things are possible if God is dead. Samuel Beckett uses the symbol of Godot in the play, to portray human situation in modern capitalist social formation and this conflict comes to a head in the meaning of Godot, in which the text of the play is ambiguously torn between contradictory meanings.
It celebrates at the same time that industrial capitalism has victimized human beings, who have become exploited, suffered, inhuman, bewildered and threatened by powerful exploiting forces of the bourgeoisie. Finally, the play tries to make us believe that any action to change the prevailing modern capitalist system is futile, absurd and impossible. In this regard, there is coexistence of two kinds of utterances in the text of the play, which is typical of the text and is the juncture that is distinct, and an ideology, which is confused, making the work literary piece of art.
The present paper concludes that the play presents an essential characteristic of human situation, which emphasizes suffering, absurdity, futility, angst and nothingness of human existence. The play also shows class relations in depiction of Master-slaves relationship between Pozzo and Lucky, which is a bleak reference to the exploiting and exploited classes and nations in the modern capitalist world.
At the same time the play makes us believe that people wait something, which does not materialize in the modern capitalist social formulation, just as expected Godot does not appear in the play. The present study may prove useful and helpful to suggest clues to the unexplored and untapped areas of the play for future research scholars.Beckett accomplishes two things by using this style of comedy.
Some critics suggest the meaning of God as inaccessible Godot. Comedy routines have a beginning and an ending. I must have taken a look at it. One of the protesters [even] wrote a vituperative letter dated 2 February to Le Monde. Hence, it is relative.
However, its incompletion is due to the presence of the late modernist bourgeois ideology, which silences it at certain points to reveal the truth. Here the natural order seems to be mixed up on a larger scale.
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