Christianity in Waiting for Godot

975 Words2 Pages

Irish-born French author Samuel Beckett was well known for his use of literary devices such as black comedy in his various literary works. Written during late 1948 and early 1949 and premiered as a play in 1953 as En attendant Godot, Beckett coupled these devices with minimalism and absurdity in order to create the tragicomedy known to English speakers as Waiting for Godot. True to its title, Waiting for Godot is the tale of a pair of best friends known as Vladimir (Didi) and Estragon (Gogo) who are waiting for the character the audience comes to know as Godot to appear. Throughout Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett alludes to the monotheistic religion of Christianity through symbols, dialogue, and characters to reveal the heavy invisible influence of God in the daily life of man.
Throughout the tragicomedy, the pair anxiously awaits the arrival of Godot. Vladimir and Estragon’s loyalty to Godot is evident within the first act of play. During a conversation between the two, Estragon asks Vladimir, “And if he doesn’t come?” to which Vladimir answers “We’ll come back tomorrow” and the go on to continue this dialogue: “Estragon: ‘And then the day after to-morrow.’/ Vladimir: ‘Possibly.’/ Estragon: ‘And so on.’/ Vladimir: ‘The point is—‘/ Estragon: ‘Until he comes’” (Beckett 10). In the New Testament of the Holy Bible, John 3:16 states that “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (King James Version, John, 3.16). This biblical verse is used frequently in the Christian church to represent the idea of salvation. However, the Bible never gives an exact time frame on salvation, leading Christians to wait for God’s impend...

... middle of paper ...

... If Godot ever comes, this cycle of waiting will be broken and life as Vladimir and Estragon have lived it will be as well. Throughout the world, Christianity is a very dominant religion, with a larger amount of followers compared to other religions such as Islam and Buddhism. Not only does Christianity have a huge influence on the followers of the religion but on non-believers as well. Christianity’s values are built into aspects of life such as finance and education among other things. In Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett uses symbol, dialogue between characters, and the characters themselves to portray the invisible influence that God has on both believers and non-believers.

Works Cited

Beckett, Samuel. Waiting for Godot: tragicomedy in 2 acts. New York: Grove Press, 1982. Print.
The Holy Bible: King James Version. Iowa Falls, IA: World Bible Publishers, 2001.

Open Document