Uploaded by Honey Rai


Roll No. - ​4013/17
Course - ​B. A. (HONS.) ENGLISH
Semester - ​VI
Time presents a slew of problems in Waiting for Godot (1953) by Samuel
Beckett. The very title of the play reveals its central action: waiting. The two
main characters are forced to whittle down their days while anticipating the
arrival of a person who never comes. Because they need nothing to try to
within the meantime, time may be a dreaded barrier, a test of their ability to
endure. Because they repeat an equivalent action a day, time is cyclical. That
every character seems to possess a faulty memory further complicates
matters; time loses meaning when the actions of 1 day haven't any relevance
or certainty on subsequent.
The concept of time and its experience plays a significant role in Beckett’s
Waiting for Godot. Along with some philosophical interpretations, the time
has some linguistic features that enable the author to create absence
through a withdrawal process. This withdrawal process works through two
stages. The first stage makes an environment for the author to create the
absence of presence and the second stage results in the presence of absence.
This Beckettian imitation of absence is created by the depiction of the
contrary witnesses which has been possible for the inherent linguistic and
phenomenological features of the time. If we take Vladimir’s repeated
utterance, “Nothing to be done” in Waiting for Godot, for example, we will
see that the word “nothing” is opposed by the presence of “to be”. If we want
to experience “nothing,” the essence of nothingness must be present. It
means that the presence or absence must be present to feel the absence. The
narration of Beckett develops a spectacular reduction ad absurdum of his
phenomenological paradigm – because, for Beckett, the chief object existing
in consciousness is the lack of object. So when Vladimir says, “Nothing to be
done” (43), it concludes that the foremost object of consciousness is nothing.
As a result, the consciousness can never be distinguished from the void. This
is a narrative style where an evacuation of an object of consciousness from
the consciousness occurs. Their attempts to reconstruct a basic idea of the
past and regain some sense of time are feeble and leave them disorientated
in a present where they are not even fully aware which day it is: ‘...And is it
Saturday? Is it not rather Sunday? [Pause.] Or Monday? [Pause.] Or Friday?’
This complex relationship between time and Waiting for Godot is
prominently marked by a variety of changes which appear to miraculously
take place overnight; although Beckett’s Act II directions mark ‘Next Day.
Same Time. Same Place’, the tree which seemed to be dead within the first
act now bears several leaves. Pozzo, the character they are available into
contact alongside his slave Lucky in Act I, has also inexplicably gone blind
when he returns to an equivalent location subsequent day. He is unable to
confirm the relationship to Vladimir between time and his unfortunate
predicament. Neither of these two events is able to be successfully traced
back onto a stable and linear time scale, helping the play to move into a
modern territory of literature because it breaks faraway from a pre-modern
Newtonian understanding of your time and duration.
In addition, time in expecting Godot is cyclical. This is largely achieved
through repetition. Some argue that the second act of the play is merely a
repeat of the first. There are many uses of repetition throughout the play, like
the road “Nothing to be done”. Waiting for Godot is regarded as a strong
example of modern literature due to Beckett’s breakdown of time.