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Explain how in Waiting for Godot, Beckett is speaking not of a place, but of a cosmic...

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sharief78 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted September 27, 2011 at 4:56 AM via web

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Explain how in Waiting for Godot, Beckett is speaking not of a place, but of a cosmic state, a world condition all humanity is involved in.

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 27, 2011 at 7:18 AM (Answer #1)

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The setting of `Waiting for Godot`. as specified by Samuel Beckett, is not a specific local, but rather a generic place (or no place). The only object on the stage is an abstract sculptural tree which serves as the only landmark in an otherwise featureless space. The tree itself is more symbolic than actual -- it is not an individual species but an instantiation of treeness. In context, it recalls the tree in the Garden of Eden, but in a post-lapsarian world, the tree no lobger has additional knowledge to offer, and merely serves as a reminder of man`s fallenness and distance from God. Nonetheless, as God once did speak directly to Adam at the tree, fallen humans linger by the tree to wait for God`s promised reappearance. The place and the waiting aqre not located in some actual spatio-temporal moment -- the only time signifiers in the play are days, but nothing distinguishes one day from another, and their are no landmarks of place, other than the tree.

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