Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett - Book Review

Waiting for Godot

Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett - Book Review

When the first act of a play starts with two people waiting for a person to come and he never shows up, the readers will be expecting the second act to feature that person along with a different setting and maybe new characters, but what happens in Waiting for Godot is that you get the same act two times straight.

The only thing changing is Vladimir, who perfectly remembers the events of the previous day—act one—but his fellow friend, Estragon, doesn’t remember anything from the day before. In fact, it appears as if time is repeating itself.

The element of repetitiveness seems to be predominant in the setting, the conversations, the appearance of characters, and even in Estragon himself, who repeats his statements of wanting to leave over and over again, to which Vladimir replies that they’re waiting for Godot.

Their bickering is so random and the conversations they have with people coming and going go without a certain direction. What this achingly boring repetitiveness suggests is that this act must have occurred more than the two times presented in the play, without any explanation as to why this is happening.

There is no purpose, and there is certainly no character development, which will further baffle anyone reading the play as to what was Beckett thinking when he wrote a play that repeats the same scene over and over again.

Because this is an absurdist work, there is no given explanation for the sporadic actions of the characters. This allowed a multitude of theories to spring up. One of them explains that Vladimir is forever stuck in a time loop that he can’t escape. Only he can remember what is happening to him as time unfolds and repeats itself.

Whatever theory you would like to believe in, this work enriches the mind of the reader and leads it to make up whatever it wants to from the text. Just like the text gives information to the mind, the mind sends information of its own back to the text and this makes the reading experience a hundred times better.

Book Details

Title: Waiting for Godot
Format: Paperback
Author: Samuel Beckett
Language : English
Publisher : Faber & Faber
ISBN: 978-0571229116

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