This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

How Do Beckett And Kafka Convey The Imprisonment Of The Main Characters In Waiting For Godot And Metamorphosis ?

1434 words - 6 pages

How do Beckett and Kafka convey the imprisonment of the main characters in Waiting for Godot and Metamorphosis ?In relation to the works Waiting for Godot and Metamorphosis, imprisonment can either be collective imprisonment or personal imprisonment. In both cases, it includes the restriction of personal freedom, the limitation of action and the deprivation of human contact. My objective is to investigate in what ways Beckett and Kafka convey the imprisonment of the main characters, and to examine the significance of their imprisonment. Therefore I will focus on Gregor Samsa in Metamorphosis and Vladimir and Estragon in Waiting for Godot.Vlaimir and Estragon are imprisoned in that they are trapped in an endless cycle. Consequently, they undergo habitual dialogues and play senseless games in order to endure their desperate situation.The main characters's imprisonment is expressed allegorically through the cyclic quality of the play. Comments like "Nothing to be done", "We're waiting for Godot" and "It's not certain" recur throughout the play. Not only do both acts begin with the entrance of Vladimir and finish with the stage direction that Vladimir and Estragon "don't move", but equally their encounters with Pozzo, Lucky and the Boy happen twice. Contrary to what the audience expects, these encounters do not contribute at all in bringing about a change in Vladimir's and Estragon's lives. Instead, the repetition of words, actions and events convey the impression that the main characters are trapped in an endless cycle, the latter being further symbolised byVladimir's song about the "dog" who "came in the kitchen". The song contains two stanzas which Vladimir continuously repeats.Estragon and Vladimir try to distract themselves from their imprisonment by undergoing habitual dialogues. After Vladimir has reminded Estragon of their duty to wait for Godot, Estragon exclaims in a "despairing" manner "What'll we do, what'll we do!". At another point, when Vladimir wants to break silence, he requires Estragon to "say something". As the latter fails, and a "long silence" ensues, Vladimir is "in anguish" and wants Estragon to "say anything at all". It is notable that silence is intolerable to them, since it brings the pain of their imprisonment back into their hearts. "Blathering about nothing in particular" seems, therefore, to be the only alternative in helping them to endure this. Such habitual dialogues generally follow the pattern "one-two-three-two". This can be seen in their attempt to describe the action of "trying boots". It goes from "occupation" over "relaxation" to "recreation" and back to "relaxation".In addition to these dialogues, the main characters' imprisonment is enhanced by their senseless playing of games. They are in steady quest of "diversion", for silence and passiveness is "awful" to them. That is why they decide to "play at Pozzo and Lucky", to "contradict each other", to "do the tree" and even to "abuse each other" without any...

Find Another Essay On How do Beckett and Kafka convey the imprisonment of the main characters in Waiting for Godot and Metamorphosis ?

"Waiting for Godot" by Samuel Beckett

1660 words - 7 pages circulatory system). Also, words are the only thing that holds the structure of the play to the end; words are the most important reason for the characters to stay on stage.Language is used to communicate from one to another, in Waiting for Godot; sometimes it seems that communication is lost between characters, as if they don't belong to the same play (world). This is rather clear when Gogo and Didi meet Pozzo and Lucky, Gogo asks Pozzo about the bags

What points of comparison and contrast do we see between "Waiting for Godot" and "Candide"?

1053 words - 4 pages Characterisation in both "Candide" and "Waiting for Godot" is surprisingly similar. The characters of "Candide" and Cacambo in Candide seem to have an almost identical relationship as the one which exists between Vladimir and Estragon. Neither of their relationships is based on friendship, but on differing aspects such as hope, servitude and dependence. But there is an underlying contrast in which we see how "Candide" and Cacambo inevitably get

"Main Themes Of Metamorphosis By Franz Kafka" Discusses Themes And Issues Brought Up Through Characters And Storyline

811 words - 4 pages only wants to do enough that she can claim she has fulfilled her duty. When she decides she has had enough, she insists that their duty to him has been fulfilled: "I don't think anyone could reproach us in the slightest," she says as she suggests that they need to get rid of him. Alienation: Before his metamorphosis, Gregor is alienated from his job, his humanity, his family, and even his body, as we see from the fact that he barely notices his

'Silence is pouring into this play like water into a sinking ship' (Samuel Beckett on Waiting for Godot). Discuss 'silence' and sub-texts in modern drama

1626 words - 7 pages and is also evident in Chekhov's Three Sisters. The family dream of moving to Moscow but are waiting for something that will never happen. They are left to pass the time, like in Beckett's plays, Waiting for Godot and Endgame. There are invisible barriers trapping them with, "speech without consequence [and] reflecting action without conclusion." Beneath the meaningless chattering of Chekhov's characters here, lies the dreadful realization of their

Change: Theme in the Metamorphosis. A theme paper on the Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka, describing how change is the main theme in the story

803 words - 3 pages The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka is a novella. The theme in this story is that change in one character leads to positive and negative change in other characters. Gregor Samsa, the main character changes into dung beetle. His change affects his family deeply and they make both positive and negative changes to accommodate both his change and themselves. The family resents Gregor and sees him as a burden, which is a negative change, but previously

Internal and External Conflicts Experienced by Characters in Araby & Metamorphosis by Joyce and Kafka

1482 words - 6 pages Araby & Metamorphosis In today's time rather than knowing if an action is right, individuals act upon circumstances that they think is right. In short stories, James Joyce writes about a young boy in "Araby" and Franz Kafka writes about Gregor Samsa in "Metamorphosis". Both characters face internal and external problems throughout these stories, also sharing similarities and differences throughout. The young boy falls for his friends sister

How do the prophets in 'The Matrix' and 'Macbeth' use their foresight to manipulate the main characters to achieve their will?

1594 words - 6 pages main characters which was encouraged by the prophets. In both cases, the prophecies are reliant on other prophecies to be fulfilled, therefore cementing the idea that the characters were being 'played'. There is, however, a question of inevitability throughout all the prophecies. This idea is given by the Oracle to Neo, the 'saviour' figure of 'The Matrix' when he is told he was going to break a vase, so he turned to look for it and swept it off

The Meaningless of Life Explored in Waiting for Godot

1277 words - 5 pages have a hopeless life that could end at any time with no particular regard given. The ending of the play is important in providing a lasting impression that shows significance. VLADIMIR: Well? Shall we go? ESTRAGON: Yes, let’s go. [They do not move] (Beckett 85). These last two lines to end Waiting for Godot serve as the punctuation to the absurdness of the play. Throughout this play, we see Vladimir and Estragon wait anxiously for Godot

Use of Time in Waiting for Godot and Mrs. Dalloway

838 words - 4 pages , time can also be seen as an underlying theme that is significant because it questions and influences the structure of the story including the characters actions, dialogues, or story's plot, setting, etc. Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot" and Virginia Woolf’s “Mrs. Dalloway” use time to show cylical patterns which influence many different aspects of charecters. "Waiting for Godot" is a play written by Samuel Beckett, in which two

The Futility of Human Existence in Waiting for Godot

651 words - 3 pages portrayed nothingness through the use of structure, language, dialogue, and setting. He further demonstrated that the lives of the two characters Vladimir and Estragon takes meaning when they wait for the ambiguous Godot. In order to be relieved from the crippling question of existence, they occupy themselves with meaningless activities. Due to the lack of a plot in Waiting for Godot, one can deduce that perhaps Beckett is referring to the futility of

The Theme of Truth in Waiting For Godot

1516 words - 6 pages The absurd play “Waiting for Godot” which was written by Samuel Beckett after the Second World War in French. This play was the first play which was so absurd so preposterous for the public that the name “Theatre of Absurd” was coined to classify such plays and drama. The play was first performed in a small theatre in Paris 1953 it was quite farce because of the low comedy and the absurd situations it gave the public. This public greatly

Similar Essays

Waiting For Godot Samuel Beckett. The Meaning Of Life And Existentialism, Significance Of Setting And Structure

2047 words - 8 pages repeated throughout the play. Vladimir: "Yes but not so rapidly" (pause) Estragon: "What do we do now?..." (pause) Vladimir: "How they have changed..."(3). As are certain words Vladimir: "And dug the dog a tomb...And dug the dog a tomb..."(4).Samuel Beckett's plays can be described as simple plays but only at a glance. As the themes and ideas behind them are perhaps not so simple. The main recurring theme throughout Waiting for Godot is the question of

"Waiting For Godot" By Beckett Essay

740 words - 3 pages One of the most unusual parts of the play is, not surprisingly, one of the most important parts. This is Lucky's 'speech', which is given near the middle of the play. It's importance is signalled not only by its content, but by its style and structure as well. While any other line in the play is important, if for no other reason, just for being there, Lucky's speech is utterly significant. In general, the other lines are short, limiting

The Belief In A Savior In Waiting For Godot, By Samuel Beckett

1220 words - 5 pages Estragon and resented Godot for not “showing up”. Pozzo went from a character that was very boastful and proud to dependent and weak. Struggle brought these characters down, and they waited for God to come to the rescue, to which he never came. Though others would argue my point of view, I believe that religion and spirituality plays a large role in the play. Works Cited Beckett, Samuel. Waiting for Godot: Tragicomedy in 2 Acts,. New York: Grove, 1954. Print.

Hopelessness In Waiting For Godot, By Samuel Beckett

1119 words - 4 pages Although Samuel Beckett’s tragicomedy, Waiting for Godot, has no definite meaning or interpretation, the play acts as a statement of hopelessness regarding human existence. Debate surrounds the play because, due to its simplicity, almost any interpretation is valid. The main characters, Estragon and Vladimir, are bumbling men who must wait for a person, being, or object named Godot, but this being never appears to grace the men with his