Endgame

Inactivity and Despair in Beckett's Dystopia

“The absence of action is intrinsic to Beckett’s vision of despair” Show how inactivity is linked to Beckett’s portrayal of a dystopia.

Hamm’s realisation of the futility of the search for a meaning to life leads him to a state of satisfaction in the pursuit itself. Inaction is a word which connotes restriction of both the physical and the mental aspects of a person. Without either of these aspects progressing, humanity will, in Beckett’s view, be trapped in a state of dystopia.

As Absurdist theatre, Endgame is a play which reveals to the audience the futility of the search for a meaning to life. Hamm’s realisation of this fact instead allows him to find meaning in the pursuit itself. However, pursuit connotes constant movement, a direct contrast to inaction. This cements Hamm’s reason for rejecting the very prospect of inaction. His longing for a constantly changing state is shown through his passion when he exclaims “we breathe, we change! We lose our hair, our teeth!” It is interesting, then, that Hamm longs for a state of nature which hasn’t changed and is “still green”. Rather than the constantly moving pursuit, the land free from physical confinement “down in the hole” is the final destination which Hamm hopes to achieve –...

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