UGC Approved Journal no 63975

ISSN: 2349-5162 | ESTD Year : 2014
Call for Paper
Volume 8 | Issue 5 | May 2021

JETIREXPLORE- Search Thousands of research papers

WhatsApp Contact
Click Here

Published in:

Volume 5 Issue 7
eISSN: 2349-5162

UGC and ISSN approved 7.95 impact factor UGC Approved Journal no 63975

7.95 impact factor calculated by Google scholar

Unique Identifier

Published Paper ID:

Registration ID:

Page Number


Share This Article

Jetir RMS


Existentialism and Samuel Bekett’s Waiting for Godot



Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot is a play that presents conflict between living by religious and spiritual beliefs, and living by an existential philosophy, which asserts that it is up to the individual to discover the meaning of life through personal experience in the earthly world. Support for this assertion regarding the nature of the play is based on first hand interpretation of the dialogue and action within the play itself as well as interpretation of quotes and ideas from Samuel Beckett and his critics. Günther Ander clearly points out the notion that the protagonists in Beckett’s plays, including Vladimir and Estragon in Waiting for Godot, reflect humanity in general. He states that “the fabulae personae whom Beckett selects as representative of today’s mankind can only be clochards, creatures excluded from the scheme of the world who have nothing to do any longer, because they do not have anything to do with it” (142). While the argument here holds with the notion of Vladimir and Estragon representing humanity, it is necessary to note that Günther’s statement conflicts with this discussion in that Vladimir and Estragon have everything to do with the world, merely lacking proper perception of it. Being more specific, it can be shown that Vladimir represents the portion of humanity who trusts in religion and spiritual beliefs to guide them, and that Estragon represents the more ideal existentialist portion of humanity who chooses to stop waiting and construct the meaning of life based on experience in the tangible and physical world around them. The following is an example of dialogue which supports this concept: Vladimir: Let’s wait and see what he says. Estragon: Who? Vladimir: Godot. Estragon: Good idea. Vladimir: Let’s wait till we know exactly how we stand. Estragon: On the other hand it might be better to strike the iron before it freezes Here we see that Vladimir is depending on Godot to tell him what he needs to know regarding his existence, while Estragon asserts that they do not have the time to wait and that they should take action on their own before it is too late. The metaphor of the cooling iron suggests that humanity does not have enough time to wait for their spiritual ponderings to offer them enlightenment, that the chance will pass, and their efforts will not take effect once it does. Therefore, it can be concluded from this that Estragon’s suggestion that he and Vladimir make their own way now, before it is too late, is the more ideal course of action advocated by the play. It is Estragon who follows the notion of no longer waiting on religion for answers and going to the philosophy of existentialism. There is another instance in the dialogue between Estragon and Vladimir that plays on the idea of Vladimir as faithfully religious and Estragon as progressively humanistic: Estragon: Charming spot. (He turns, advances to front, halts, facing auditorium.) Inspiring prospects. (He turns to Vladimir.) Let’s go: Vladimir: We can’t. Estragon: Why not? Vladimir: We’re waiting for Godot. Estragon: (despairingly). Ah! (8) Once again, the existential philosophy of human experience in the physical world is what Estragon seeks in his desire to leave for “inspiring prospects,” and the common human tendency to wait on religion to offer answers is inherent in Vladimir’s suggestion that they should stay and wait so that they can be enlightened by Godot.

Key Words

Existentialism, Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett.

Cite This Article

"Existentialism and Samuel Bekett’s Waiting for Godot", International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Innovative Research (, ISSN:2349-5162, Vol.5, Issue 7, page no.731-734, July-2018, Available :


2349-5162 | Impact Factor 7.95 Calculate by Google Scholar

An International Scholarly Open Access Journal, Peer-Reviewed, Refereed Journal Impact Factor 7.95 Calculate by Google Scholar and Semantic Scholar | AI-Powered Research Tool, Multidisciplinary, Monthly, Multilanguage Journal Indexing in All Major Database & Metadata, Citation Generator

Cite This Article

"Existentialism and Samuel Bekett’s Waiting for Godot", International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Innovative Research ( | UGC and issn Approved), ISSN:2349-5162, Vol.5, Issue 7, page no. pp731-734, July-2018, Available at :

Publication Details

Published Paper ID: JETIR1807999
Registration ID: 186013
Published In: Volume 5 | Issue 7 | Year July-2018
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Page No: 731-734
Area: Arts
ISSN Number: 2349-5162

Preview This Article


Click here for Article Preview

Download PDF



Print This Page

Current Call For Paper

Jetir RMS