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Chance plays a major role in samuel becketts comedy waiting for god

Support for this assertion regarding the nature of the play is based on first hand interpretation of the dialogue and action within the play itself as well as interpretation of quotes and ideas from Samuel Beckett and his critics.

Chance plays a major role in samuel becketts comedy waiting for god

Being more specific, it can be shown that Vladimir represents the portion of humanity who trusts in religion and spiritual beliefs to guide them, and that Estragon represents the more ideal existentialist portion of humanity who chooses to stop waiting and construct the meaning of life based on experience in the tangible and physical world around them. The following is an example of dialogue which supports this concept: On the other hand it might be better to strike the iron before it freezes 13.

Here we see that Vladimir is depending on Godot to tell him what he needs to know regarding his existence, while Estragon asserts that they do not have the time to wait and that they should take action on their own before it is too late.

  • Quando noi fummo l 've la rugiada pugna col sole, per essere in parte dove, ad orezza, poco si dirada, ambo le mani in su l'erbetta sparte;
  • Faber and Faber, 1984 , p 36.

The metaphor of the cooling iron suggests that humanity does not have enough time to wait for their spiritual ponderings to offer them enlightenment, that the chance will pass, and their efforts will not take effect once it does. It is Estragon who follows the notion of no longer waiting on religion for answers and going to the philosophy of existentialism.

There is another instance in the dialogue between Estragon and Vladimir that plays on the idea of Vladimir as faithfully religious and Estragon as progressively humanistic: He turns, advances to front, halts, facing auditorium. He turns to Vladimir. Samuel Beckett, 1977 Those who interpret the play often expend too much effort attempting to infer the identity of Godot.

Even Beckett himself states that he has no idea who Godot is, and that he would have made it clear in the play if he did Ben-Zvi 141-142. In this case, the entire play reflects the situation humans find themselves in. Godot does not have an identity, according to Beckett, and it is therefore erroneous to try to find out who he is.

Considering the way in which this play reflects the human condition, one can also say that this means it is erroneous to ponder the spiritual realm which is beyond our ability to comprehend. Porter Abbott also makes note of the idea that it should not be the focus of interpretation of the play to find out who Godot is. He notes that the audience should be most concerned with the fact that the identity and nature of Godot is never revealed, rather than trying to figure out his identity.

When the boy comes at the end of both acts and informs Chance plays a major role in samuel becketts comedy waiting for god that Godot is going to come, Vladimir never questions him about how truthful he is being about his knowledge of Godot. Vladimir only asks the boy superficial things about him, his brother, and his home life. The following section of dialogue in the second act is an example of this: What does he do, Mr. Do you hear me? He does nothing, Sir. How is your brother? It seems from this that Beckett is making a statement about the case of blind faith in religion.

Christians, for example, are taught to never question the will of God, and take what they are told about him for granted. Estragon and Vladimir Near the beginning of the first act, Estragon attempts to tell Vladimir what he had dreamed after waking from a nap.

The following silence sets this quote apart from the rest of the line, it makes reference to the idea of looking to the supernatural, the universe, as one way of pondering the meaning of life.

  • Where there was certainty, there is now doubt and angst;
  • A Collection of Critical Essays;
  • But habit is a great deadener;
  • Best dystopia of all time is a top list in the general an aristocratic boy of his age with radical beliefs about god who also plays a small role;
  • If you said to Sam, 'What does that line mean?
  • Productions in California's San Quentin prison and in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina captured a restless present and yearning for renewal.

Estragon would rather discuss his dream with Vladimir, and maybe through interpretation, become more enlightened about the human condition. It seems as though Beckett makes use of this to say that one should place more emphasis on personal experience as a means of discovering profound truths rather than looking into a realm beyond human comprehension and certainty.

The relationship between Pozzo and Lucky in the first act is an chance plays a major role in samuel becketts comedy waiting for god of the notion that humanity must look away from religion as a source of the meaning of life. The dynamic between Pozzo and Lucky in the first act reflects the relationship some people have with their religion. When Estragon asks why Lucky does not relieve himself of the burden he carries once he and Pozzo have stopped to rest, Pozzo replies that it is because Lucky is trying to impress him so that he will not be sold at the fair.

This reflects how a religious person would bear certain discomforts, such as rising early from bed every Sunday to attend church, in order to please higher beings, eternal bliss in the afterlife.

In the second act, it is revealed that at least one of the bags carried by Lucky is filled with sand. A bag of sand most often merely serves the purpose of providing extra weight, such as sandbags often used to stave of flood waters, or to weigh down a hot air balloon. Given this, it can be concluded that the unnecessary nature of the bag filled with sand that Lucky faithfully bears in order to impress his master is symbolic of the unnecessary burden many religious people carry in their various rituals of worship.

One can conclude from this that the situation with Pozzo and Lucky is an attempt by Beckett to express the notion that religious practices serve no actual practical purpose, that it is an unnecessary weight keeping them from noticing the enlightenment the physical world has to offer.

It appears as though Beckett misspoke when questioned about Lucky. It is arguable, however, that Lucky actually does have expectations, and that he is equally, if not more, insecure than the two tramps who remain forever waiting for Godot. Lucky faces the uncertainty of whether he will end up remaining with Pozzo, or with a new master, in much the same way that most religious people are always waiting to find out what they have waiting for them in the afterlife.

Existentialism in Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot

The protagonists of the play certainly lack burden from the past as a result of not retaining it, but it is not the purpose of this discussion to suggest that it is more because they do not really have a past to remember, rather than the fact that they can not remember.

Vladimir and Estragon spend their present finding ways to simply kill the time and focus their attention on the future, neglecting their present. Without paying attention to the present, one will not have sufficient memory of it when it becomes the past. From a spiritual perspective, this seems to say that people who spend their lives working to ensure bliss in the afterlife and to understand the meaning of life should instead focus on what they have before them so that they can make the most of life and not end up wasting it by building themselves up to spiritual expectations which are far less certain than the pleasures immediately obtainable in the physical world.

  • Author of waiting for godot, explores chance and the samuel beckett's play waiting for godot is a play and the comedy play of waiting for godot;
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  • Retrieved 22 April 2015.

It can be concluded that the interpretation of instances from the dialogue, character dynamic, and second party interpretation of Waiting for Godot by Samuel Becket offers much compelling evidence in support of the notion that the play makes reference to existentialist philosophy as a more suitable means of the pursuit for the meaning of life than is following religion or making spiritual inferences.

Works Cited Abbott, H. The Fiction of Samuel Beckett: University of California Press, 1973. A Collection of Critical Essays. The Shape of Chaos: An Interpretation of the Art of Samuel Beckett. The University of Minnesota Press, 1971.