Samuel Beckett’s Waiting For Godot

654 Words3 Pages
While considering the work, its author, and the comments I have found about the play, I have come up with three hypotheses as to the meaning and overall theme. Either it is about Humanity waiting for a savior that does exist to return; or it could be about the hopelessness of Humanity waiting for a savior that doesn’t exist, and therefore will never come; or, the easiest of possibilities, that Waiting really has no theme at all. This last theory is the one that I most readily accept, and the answer that Samuel Beckett, the author of the play, put forth when questioned about the meaning of his strange little piece. Many critics put the first theory forth as the true meaning of Waiting, and there are many aspects of it by which they can make their point. The most obvious is the title character, Godot, because the root word of the name is God. The many references to Christianity also create a close connection between the storyline and many important stories from the Bible. From the very beginning Vladimir and Estragon ponder their salvation, consider death, and draw a parallel between themselves and the two thieves that were crucified along with Jesus, according to the Gospels. Vladimir: …One of the thieves was saved. It’s a reasonable percentage. Gogo. Estragon: What? Vladimir: Suppose we repented. Estragon: Repented what? Vladimir: Oh…we wouldn’t have to go into the details. Estragon: Our being born? (Beckett, p.8) The general attitude expressed throughout is the hopelessness, or possibly the meaningless-ness of life. Humanity’s purpose is simply to wait out its existence until the Second Coming. Everything we do, say, feel, experience, etc., is just passing the time until our lives come to an end. Vladimir: That passed the time. Estragon: It would have passed in any case. Vladimir: Yes, but not so rapidly. (Beckett, p.31) Let us assume that Godot does symbolize God. He is someone who will come to make a great change in the Vladimir and Estragon’s lives, a great change for the better. But Godot, and whatever that change may be, does not come throughout the length of the play. They mistake Pozzo for Godot, and they mistake the messenger for Godot, because they do not know what Godot looks like or what manner of person he may be.
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