Saturday, September 12, 2009

Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

Since I wasn’t a theater guy after high-school, I missed out on Beckett earlier in life. But after Rushdie quoted him in one of his essays in Imaginary Homelands I became intrigued and decided to dive into his most famous work. Waiting for Godot is a compelling, hilarious, though-provoking piece in which, as a famous critic once said, “nothing happens. Twice.” It’s almost true that the purgatorial setting and nearly nonsensical dialog between Vladamir and Estragon are beyond puzzling. So much has been written about this intentionally opaque work that it’s hard to imagine anything I can add, except to say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading the play, and enjoyed even more trying to interact with Pozzy, Lucky, and the text after the fact, in ways that I think the author might well have appreciated.

(What do I think? I think that despite Beckett’s denial, Godot is God, the men are in Purgatory awaiting a conclusion or judgement on their lives. I think that Vladamir has a venereal disease and that Pozzo is a demon of some sort who is punishing the hapless ‘Lucky’ who is a standin for mankind as a whole.)

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