Sunday, May 18, 2008

Godot, and The Uprooted from Life

I cannot go for long without the society of my likes "

For certain people, Waiting for Godot is a fantastical drama. It is for them a play that is curious, obscure, uprooted from life, arbitrary, strange, capricious. Maybe also a posthumous secretion of "surrealism". Maybe also an obscure illustration for an extravagant philosophy of existence. Maybe finally the pure objectification of delirium. It becomes thus, for the audience, a drama that has nothing to do with their lives, with their commute to work, with their office, with their conversations.

What if so happens in reality?

Waiting for Godot is for them a sort of bizarre animal in the theatre; like the dramatization of a dream or a magical experience. For others, they are up against something worse: facing a hallucination or a work conceived during a psychotic episode, or simply the jeering speculation of an author who tried to shock na├»ve men. At any rate, "this" is something that "doesn’t concern us", or that, at least, "shouldn’t upset us too much" . We can put our hands in our pockets and whistle.

....which forces our attention upon the extent to which we normally depend on mobility—both in life and in literature. Mobility offers the chance of escape from an undesirable situation , and the possibility of communication with other beings outside our immediate vicinity. Without mobility we are reduced to a vegetative, passive existence. But we are mobile, are we not? . . . On the other hand, our area of choice is strictly limited by time and space . Man is limited by his achievement, he will never reach infinity. Perhaps to within one step of infinity, but never there. Man is imprisoned within his life-span, but for Beckett it is not so simple as it is for those who believe there is an end to it. Most of us cling to the idea of continuation or resurrection of identity, but supposing this means going on for ever? Will not the end be increasingly desired as it draws near? Shall we not long to be freed into a state of blessed nothingness? This depends on the quality of the existence in store for us, and about this we are mercifully ignorant, although we may entertain private hopes.

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