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Waiting for Godot - English: A Tragicomedy in Two Acts Paperback – Jan 18 1994


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Gifts For Dad




Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Raincoast Books; 1 edition (Jan. 18 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802130348
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802130341
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 13.9 x 0.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 113 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #194,664 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

One of the true masterpieces of the century. Clive Barnes, "The New York Times" One of the most noble and moving plays of our generation, a threnody of hope deceived and deferred but never extinguished; a play suffused with tenderness for the whole human perplexity; with phrases that come like a sharp stab of beauty and pain. "The Times" (London) Beckett is an incomparable spellbinder. He writes with rhetoric and music that . . . make a poet green with envy. Stephen Spender Reading Beckett for the first time is an experience like no other in modern literature. Paul Auster [Godot is ] among the most studied, monographed, celebrated and sent-up works of modern art, and perhaps as influential as any from the last century. The nonstory of two tramps at loose ends in a landscape barren of all but a single tree, amusing or distracting themselves from oppressive boredom while they wait for a mysterious figure who never arrives, the play became the ur-text for theatrical innovation and existential thought in the latter half of 20th century. Christopher Isherwood, "The New York Times" " --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Samuel Beckett was born on April 13, 1906, in Ireland. Best known for the classicWaiting for Godot, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1969. He spent most of his life in Paris and died there in 1989.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 28 2003
Format: Paperback
Waiting for Godot centers around two bums: Estragon and Vladimir. Estragon has an incredibly short memory and relies on Vladimir to remember for him. As a result, Estragon is extremely impatient and constantly suggests that the two would be better off if they parted. However, Estragon needs Vladimir and Vladimir needs Estragon, so they never do part. Vladimir, due to Estragon's lack of memory, is unsure of his own memory. Vladimir enjoys the company of Estragon, for it allows him to recall past events. Together, they spend their time devising ways to pass the time until 'Godot' arrives. Neither Estragon and Vladimir or the reader surely know what Godot is or looks like or whether he will ever arrive. On two occasions, they meet Pozzo and Lucky. Pozzo is Lucky's master and decides to stop and talk to Estragon and Vladimir for a bit of company. Pozzo hardly listens to what the other characters in the play say and frequently launches into melodramatic prose. Lucky is Pozzo's slave, tied to Pozzo via a rope around his neck. Lucky only speaks twice during the entire play. His monologue, which is delivered upon Pozzo's order of 'Think', is completely incoherent - a mix of half-finished words and sentences. Lucky is very obedient to Pozzo and rather violent and hostile to strangers, especially Estragon, who he bites. In the second act, Pozzo and Lucky return again, this time Pozzo is blind and Lucky is mute. They have no memory of ever having met Estragon and Vladimir. The play ends in the same way Act One ends - Estragon and Vladimir are still dependent on eachother and remain waiting for Godot.
Waiting for Godot is a classic text of existentialism and Absurdist literature.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By "mikethecommie" on April 13 2004
Format: Paperback
Apparently, people have made much of the "fact" that Godot is god. While hardly being a fact (and in fact, being outwardly denied by Beckett himself), people who search too desperately for the specific personage Godot represents miss the point. One can say that Godot is god, especially if one is a New Critic and therefore ignores whatever the author may have said about his work. And while at one point Vladimir exclaims (and I'm just paraphrasing): "Godot is here! We are saved," this does not explicitly explain who Godot is. He could just as easily be bringing money to Vladimir and Estragon as he could be bearing salvation for them. The point is, that Beckett was an essentially existential writer, and saw that all of life was just waiting for the terminal breath. Furthermore, in the act of waiting for an ending, Vladimir and Estragon constantly make the existential choice: whether or not to keep on waiting. Several times they contemplate committing suicide; several times Estragon threatens to leave. In the end, they confirm their existence (yes, only one existence--they seem to be as one person in the dialogue: this is no mistake) by deciding, if offhandishly, to remain living; living, and waiting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "fictionandprose" on Oct. 5 2003
Format: Paperback
An existentialist tragicomedy in two acts. I loved this play-- definitely the epitome of a tragicomedy. I laughed out loud at many of the lines from Vladimir and Estragon, the main characters, as well as Pozzo, a man that happens by as they wait for Godot. The deeper themes of the play got me thinking too.
Who is Godot and why are these two men waiting for him? Good question. It's not important though-- not as important as their waiting to be saved by Godot at least. The way the characters passed away the time of their waiting made the pages fly by for me-- it seemed I had scarcely started when I was at the end!
Highly recommended. Waiting for Godot is a great, quick read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 9 2004
Format: Paperback
I thought the play beautifully expressed in laconic dialogue how some individuals deny reality, the human condition, and mortality by distracting themselves with meaningless activies. I don't know if Beckett saw life as meaningless. The mystery of life makes all of us story tellers. It's our responsiblity to find a story, activity, purpose, gift, belief that gives our lives fullness as opposed to emptyness.
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By David Wineberg TOP 100 REVIEWER on Feb. 12 2013
Format: Paperback
The amazing thing about Waiting for Godot is that it has always engendered confusion, uncertainty and half-formed theories. It's puzzling to most viewers and reviewers. So much so, you have to wonder why anyone likes it, since they don't seem to be able to understand it. Yet far from an enigmatic muddle, Godot is crystal clear. It is an Irish vision of Purgatory/Limbo.

All the evidence points to it; no evidence contradicts it. It lets the whole story come together consistently and rationally. Two ragged fellows meet every morning and do nothing all day. Not that there is anything to do - the world is essentially flat, boundless, gray and barren, save for one derisory dead tree. There is no water, no food (save for a single old vegetable in the pocket of one of them - every day), no shelter, no objects of any kind. Not even a place to sit. Estragon is doomed to remember nothing except being beaten up the night before. Every night. Vladimir is cursed with an inkling of having been here and done this before, but can't quite nail it. Total frustration.

They consider suicide, but don't even have the means to do even that little. They are dead men already, so it is redundant. They cross paths with another pair, similarly cursed, and this happens every day with no one remembering the previous encounter. They are doomed to repeat this meaningless activity every day for eternity. And part of it is waiting for a man who they've never met and who never comes. He cancels on them every afternoon.

What fresh hell is this? to borrow from Ms. Parker. They are waiting for God(ot) to decide their eternal fates. And every day, God doesn't show. It's Limbo (since cancelled).
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