Broadly discuss the characteristics of Pozzo in Waiting for Godot.

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Samuel Beckett's absurdist play Waiting for Godot, the character of Pozzo (whose name means "oil well" perhaps to represent that he is a rich man) is the direct antagonist of the story

Physically, he is bald-headed, wears a bowler hat and suit in good condition, and his demeanor clearly demonstrates that he feels superior to everyone around him. He weighs in heavily in the play as his loud voice, mean manners, and abusive tendencies set him greatly aside. The reader can immediately appreciate the contrast between Pozzo and the rest of the characters.

Under a social perspective, he is petulant, snobbish, haughty, stubborn, arrogant, and annoying. He clearly uses these behaviors as defense mechanisms to cover his inner weaknesses. After all, when he becomes blind later in the play it is clear that he cannot even lift a finger on his behalf. He really is a rich nobody.

Metaphorically speaking, he represents the deadly sins of gluttony, sloth, avarice, and envy. He eats excessively only to see his servant dive after his bones. He makes his servant (ironically named "Lucky") carry his belongings everywhere they go. Even more sadly, he drags Luckyaround by pulling him from a rope attached to himself (Pozzo).

In the end, justice (or karma) seem to want to teach him a lesson when he becomes blind and desperately needs the help of those whom he humiliates and annoys. This is also another symbol for the weakness and helplessness of mankind: Money and power cannot prevent fate for targeting you and turning your life around.

In conclusion, Pozzo represents all that is wrong in a society that is over-preoccupied with money and power. He represents the weakness of life, and the inevitability of fate in any tier of society.

ocean | Student

Pozzo represents the adverse, absurd circumstances of life. He wants to have some company when he stops and talks to Vladimir and Estragon.He is the master of Lucky and represents the controlling being and treats him contemptibly. However by the passage of time he becomes blind and needs help.

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Waiting for Godot

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