What are criticisms of Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett?

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett is considered one of the most important works of modernist drama, but it is also a play which, like most of Beckett's work, requires a sophisticated and attentive audience. One of the major themes in the play is the futility and boredom of lives spent waiting for something that never arrives. The play has a quite limited plot structure and dialogue based on repetition, and it is set on a stage that is empty except for a single tree. Beckett creates an experience that is sometimes considered frustrating for the audience and for the characters, but that is the point of the play.

Although the play has been analyzed from many different critical perspectives, including Freudian, Marxist, and structuralist, most analysis of it focuses on the way it exemplifies the senselessness of the human condition. While Godot, like God, provides a goal for Vladamir and Estragon, we are not sure if Godot actually exists or whether he will actually arrive.

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