Meaning of Life in "Godot" and "Hamlet" Comparison Essay

Meaning of Life in "Godot" and "Hamlet"
Compares the meaning of life as discussed in Samuel Beckett's drama "Waiting For Godot" and in William Shakespeare's play "Hamlet".
# 147384 | 1,055 words | 0 sources | 2011 | US
Published on Mar 28, 2011 in Drama and Theater (English) , Literature (English) , English (Analysis) , Shakespeare (Hamlet)

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This paper explains that, in Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot", the play eventually projects a theme of optimism even though life is confusing and possibly meaningless; whereas, in William Shakespeare's "Hamlet", the play presents a passionate dilemma between life and mortality. The paper also illustrates that, in both plays, the minor details are symbols of the persistence and hope that characterize the meaning of life for the protagonists as they cope with enigmatic situations. The paper concludes that a play's literary value cannot be judged solely on action and plot but also on character development and symbolic references.

From the Paper:

"In Godot, Beckett utilizes key symbols to insinuate the hopeful message of the play. One of the key symbols in the play is the leaves on the tree that Vladimir and Estragon wait near. In Act 2, when Vladimir and Estragon are having one of their long repetitious banters, Vladimir notices that, "yesterday evening it was all black and bare. And now it's covered with leaves." In the start of the play, the tree has no leaves, and now the tree contains many leaves. This change in nature is a sign of hope for the men. The tree is a living entity; therefore, the addition of leaves represents a more fruitful and fulfilled life."

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Meaning of Life in "Godot" and "Hamlet" (2011, March 28) Retrieved July 12, 2020, from

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"Meaning of Life in "Godot" and "Hamlet"" 28 March 2011. Web. 12 July. 2020. <>