Reading Response To Waiting For Godot Essay

This essay has a total of 943 words and 4 pages.

Reading Response To Waiting For Godot

Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot is an absurd play about two men, Vladimir (Didi) and
Estragon (Gogo) who wait under a withered tree for Godot, who Vladimir says has an
important but unknown message. This play is incredibly bizarre, because at times it is
difficult to discern if there is a plot at all, and at other times, the play seems
incredibly profound.One of the most ambiguous aspects of Beckett's play is the identity of
Godot. If the reader analyzes all the Biblical allusions, it is quite easy to say that
Godot is God. (Actually, the word Godot can be anagrammed to say "To God," but it is
questionable whether this is mere coincidence or has some significance.) The
interpretation, then, would be of two men (mankind as a whole) waiting for something
(salvation or proof) that will never come. (Every day, a messenger says that Godot will
come tomorrow for certain.) This message is very appropriate when considering the play's
existentialist aspects.Interestingly, Vladimir and Estragon deny that they know Godot when
Pozzo asks them. Keeping with the religious theme, this is parallel to Peter's denial of
Jesus.Another interpretation is that Pozzo is God, and Lucky is mankind. Perhaps Pozzo is
really Godot, as he was mistaken for Godot, or maybe Pozzo is just there as a deception.
Lucky wants to satisfy Pozzo with menial acts of obedience (according to Pozzo's own
explanation of Lucky's actions), while Pozzo seems quite apathetic to Lucky's deeds and
plights. However, in the second act, Pozzo needs Lucky to exist, because Pozzo is blind.
Perhaps this is similar to the theory that God would not exist if man did not believe in
Him.Pozzo and Lucky are easily compared as the oppressed masses and the wealthy
oppressors. If Beckett is trying to be a social critic, he could be saying that the
oppressed are dumb and moored (Lucky is mute), or maybe he is merely showing humans at
their most awful.Mutual dependence is a recurring theme in the play. Vladimir and Estragon
depend upon each other (as companions), and Pozzo and Lucky are dependent upon each other.
Didi and Gogo have been together for at least fifty years, and Gogo has left Didi and
returned many times. Obviously, they need each other to survive. Pozzo depends on Lucky
for labor and entertainment, and then for sight. Indeed, it is appropriate that Pozzo
talks of listening to Lucky think for him (guide), and then he needs Lucky to guide him in
a very literal sense. The other dependency is subtler. Vladimir and Estragon represent
body and soul. However, they must not be separately identified (one is the body, the other
is the soul), for they are both two halves of a split being. They always want to deny Self
(separating themselves). It is most clear that both are one at the few moments when they
agree with one another, when they complete each other's thoughts, or even when they say
the same thing, two voice united as one.The most confusing part of the entire play is
Lucky's monologue, which might be a parody of intellectual speeches, due to weird
references and the comical stutter. It is full of classical references to things with
which many high school students are not familiar. Additionally, a lot of the words are
distorted versions of slang words: "Belcher" as "belch," "Fartov" as "fart," "Testew" as
"testes," "Cunard" as "c---," "possy" as "p----," and "Feckham" as "f--- him". Perhaps
these are farfetched, but the purpose in using such base words is to make his speech
cruder and more derisive. They describe VERY human, earthly functions. These words truly
represent a disintegrating mind (one given to too much waiting). Some other weird words
(which had to be looked up): "apathia", "athambia," and "aphasia." "Apathia" is obviously
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