The Myth of Sisyphus

This One is Enough for You?: Vladimir and Estragon as Figures of the Despair of Philosophical Suicide and Denial of an Absurd Existence College

“We can always find something, eh Didi, to give us the impression we exist?”[1] Samuel Beckett’s character Estragon asks his friend Vladimir in Beckett’s tragicomedy, Waiting for Godot. This postmodernist play has provoked an enormous amount of analysis, commentary, and criticism since its first performance in 1953. Intellectuals have not ceased trying to interpret Beckett’s intentions in creating such an obscure and disconcerting “story” if one could even go so far as to call it that. The confrontations regarding the entities of self and existence that arise from such a work elicits a demand for further understanding that stems from each individual’s quest for truth. However Beckett has been notoriously silent to all inquiries on the subject matter behind his work. He has said, “My work is a matter of fundamental sounds made as fully as possible, and I accept responsibility for nothing else. If people want to have headaches among the overtones, let them. And provide their own aspirin.”[2]

Martin Esslin delves into Beckett and his concept of art and this very rejection of applying specific meaning to his work. He says, “[Beckett’s literary creations]-- through their very uncompromising concentration on existential experience,...

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