Waiting for Godot

Topics: Waiting for Godot, Existentialism, Samuel Beckett Pages: 3 (1080 words) Published: June 1, 2001
Who is Godot and what does he represent? These are two of the questions that Samuel Beckett allows both his characters and the audience to ponder. Many experiences in this stage production expand and narrow how these questions are viewed. The process of waiting reassures the characters in Beckett's play that they do indeed exist. One of the roles that Beckett has assigned to Godot is to be a savior of sorts. Godot helps to give the two tramps in Waiting for Godot a sense of purpose. Godot is an omnipresent character that helps to give meaning and function to the lives of two homeless men. The main characters in Waiting for Godot are dependent

upon each other for reassurance of their existence. Existentialism is defined as being grounded in existence or being able to affirm existence. Vladimir and Estragon are able to confirm their existence in the world is by the constant need to remind each other of what is happening. Estragon forgets every day what events occurred the previous day. The forgetfulness cast doubt on the actual existence of these two men. Vladimir needs to tell Estragon every day what happened the previous day; this reinforces their need for each other. Since no one else in the play remembers Vladimir and Estragon, this game of remembering is very important. When the boy and Pozzo forget meeting Vladimir and Estragon, it once again casts doubt on the actual existence of these two men. The existential philosophers like Soren Kiekegard and Jean-Paul Sartre probably influenced this existential spin by Beckett. The belief of these philosophers is that people have free will and can make, as well as follow through with their own decisions. Beckett's protagonists contradict this belief as they are always making decisions but are unable to carry them out. The two hobos constantly reaffirm their being by recalling that they are waiting for Godot. Godot is a significant figure despite never physically being in the play. The...
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