“The Stranger” by Albert Camus and “Waiting for Godot” by Samuel Beckett are both pieces of literature that explore the idea of absurdism. “The Stranger” describes a story of the protagonist, Meursault, who is viewed as an outsider in society. He killed an Arab and was consequently ordered to be executed because he was different from the society around him. “Waiting for Godot”, on the other hand, is a story about two main characters waiting for a person named Godot who never shows up. Eventually time just passes without any regular routine. Comparatively, two pieces of literature have both similarities and differences, which will be examined in this essay.
First of all, I will start with the similarities. In both “The Stranger” and “Waiting for Godot”, the protagonists keep repeating routines. There are few instances of repetition in “The Stranger”. Meursault never has any surprising events that happen in his life. The only things he does every day and cares about is going to work, having sex, …show more content…
Estragon: What’s all this about? Abused who?
Vladimir: The Savior.
Vladimir and Estragon are waiting for Godot, who is probably God, to come and give them the answers. However, Godot never comes. Hence, it is shown that both stories explore the theme of extentialism throughout the story.
Comparatively, “The Stranger” and “Waiting for Godot” have differences, too. One of the differences that could be discussed is how time passes. In “The Stranger”, time moves in chronological order, like our normal daily lives, from morning to night. In the story, the events also happen progressively, from Meursault attending his mother’s funeral to his murder of the Arab, and at last, to his trial. However, in “Waiting for Godot”, it is hard for the readers to identify whether time moves forward or not.
“Vladimir: Where were you? I thought you were gone for ever.
Estragon: They’re coming!
Estragon: I don’t
Theatre is a complex art that attempts to weave stories of varying degrees of intricacies with the hope that feelings will be elicited from the audience. Samuel Beckett’s most famous work in the theatre world, however, is Waiting for Godot, the play in which, according to well-known Irish critic Vivian Mercier, “nothing happens, twice.” Beckett pioneered many different levels of groundbreaking and avant-garde theatre and had a large influence on the section of the modern idea of presentational theatre as opposed to the representational. His career seemingly marks the end of modernism in theatre and the creation of what is known as the “Theatre of the Absurd.”
In The Stranger, Albert Camus describes the life of the protagonist, Meursault, through life changing events. The passage chosen illustrates Meursault’s view during his time in prison for killing the Arab. In prison, one can see the shifts in Meursault’s character and the acceptance of this new lifestyle. Camus manipulates diction to indicate the changes in Meursault caused by time thinking of memories in prison and realization of his pointless life. Because Camus published this book at the beginning of World War II, people at this time period also questions life and death similar to how Meursault does.
Harold Pinter and Samuel Beckett are two of the biggest exponents of The Theatre of the Absurd. Both of their works present a world which cannot be logically explained, where the scenery, the language and the actions of the characters are almost incomprehensible and do not comply with the previously accepted norms of theatre.
The way life is presented in “OMAM” there is brotherhood and the characters work together to fulfill a dream of theirs, George and lennie are hard working men looking for a job and they are dedicated to get their own land and they want to succeed , In “The Strangers” human existence in life does not matter just like how Meursault acts he doesn’t really have a life goal and just goes with the flow of life and Meursault is just a passive character that is clueless to what is happening around him and is a insensitive person. In “OMAM” and “The Strangers”, human existence is portrayed differently by murder, values and society.
With the appearance of Waiting for Godot at the Théâtre de Babylone in Paris in 1953, the literary world was shaken by the arrival of a drama so different yet so thrilling that it gave rise to the "Theater of the Absurd". His contribution to this particular type of theater movement allows us to refer to him as the father of the genre. While other dramatists, such as Tom Stoppard, have also contributed to this genre, Beckett remains its single, most lofty figure. It is this type of theater that deals with the absurd aspects of life, to stress upon its native meaninglessness. It is the time and identity of characters that are usually vague or ambiguous in such plays from the theater of absurd. The plays are dreamy and impossible to
In addition, Meursault’s sensory experience of life, his physical pleasures and in-the-now perspective, is a demonstration of living life to the fullest. The absurdist must live life passionately, putting all of one’s weight into existence by not wasting time or energy on the ethereal or ephemeral. The fact that Meursault does not want to think about religion, even as he awaits execution, shows how the ideal absurdist would live life: loyal to one’s own being until the end – not to a father in the sky, or to an abstract hope. Meaning of one’s life must come from one’s own creative efforts. Meursault’s indifference to spiritual matters – and even sensory matters that are in the distant past and are therefore unimportant to him – is used to emphasize the passion for the present that Camus decided the absurd hero should have. So it is not so much that Meursault is totally indifferent, he is just indifferent to things outside of the now.
His background of living a poor life, almost near death from contracting tuberculosis, and working as a resistance fighter against the Nazis’, aided him in weaving in the theme of absurdism. Meursault’s view on absurdism that life is meaningless and death is inevitable allows him to believe he is normal, but creates separation from readers,
Modernist fiction is incredibly dense and abstract. Writers from the twentieth century also seem to carry with them the weight of the world, and thus their fiction has been filled with realistic misery and pain. Still, these writers often add to this element with existentialist thematic structures, which construct a very unique and experimental viewpoint on a modern existence. This is what is occurring in both Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot as well as Albert Camus' The Stranger. The two a very different in format, yet both play upon the modernist idea of abandonment by God and the idea that there is an underlying sense of nothingness that guides modern life. Each focuses on the notion of free will and how it determines our lives in a world devoid of God. Together, these great works of contemporary fiction are a telling testament to the changing nature of sentiments regarding both religion and the meaning of life in a tumultuous twentieth century paradigm.
The simple sentences in The Stranger reveal Meursault’s emotional detachment from society, while the more complex sentences are assigned to objects with authority. Throughout the entire novel, Meursault’s simplicity and disinterest in the world can be identified with the incorporation of his simple statements. Especially in this particular passage, Meursault finds it unimportant to challenge himself in a way that makes sense. Although Meursault recognizes the sensibility of walking
Harold Pinter belongs to the group of the twentieth century absurdist playwrights who came to become known as the innovators of an Avant-garde style in their playwritings by breaking away from the old concepts of morality, religion and sentimentality. The post world war playwrights and writers such as Beckett, Eugene Ionesco, Genet, Adamov and T. S. Eliot became well aware of the social, political and economic tribulations that jeopardized the existence of modern man. The utter helplessness of man and his futile efforts to escape resulted in the emergence of the theories of absurdism and existentialism, and there was a shift in the definition of what was considered the real and the unreal. Harold Pinter’s play “The Birthday Party” explicates the sense of absurdity of human life trapped in a claustrophobic atmosphere. The theme of absurdism in Pinter’s “The birthday Party” consists in the playwright’s implication that there is no logical progression of the plot.
Samuel Beckett’s use of humor can be seen throughout his repertoire of work, ranging from the exaggeratedly tragic lives of the two characters in Rough for Theater I to the mechanical prodding that is required to rouse the characters in Act Without Words II. The humor in Beckett’s work is given dimension by the fact that it addresses morbid themes such as death, poverty, suffering, and the crushing despair and apathy that comes with the realization of the meaninglessness of life--the cornerstone of existentialism. Thus, the reader is amused by the works because, through humor, Beckett lightens the tenebrous view of life that is existentialism. Such a response to
Albert Camus, born in colonized Algeria, a father to absurdism, and author of The Stranger confronts the philosophical themes of purpose, integrity, and passivity. The Stranger’s main character, Meursault, is a laconic man whose passive actions and brutal honesty lend to connections in his court trial. Those of which condemn him to execution. Meursault falls victim to his complete honesty, complete passivity, and disregard for the purpose of action. He is straightforward, and his actions usually follow his thoughts. Actions and decisions that most average people regard as serious, Meursault regards as arbitrary. Meursault’s exemplification of absurdism proves to not only lend to his characterization, but as a comfort in his death as well.
The Theater of the Absurd is a post-World War II designation for absurd fictional plays written by a number of mostly European playwrights in the late 1950s, so recognized for the theater style that has evolved from their work. Their work focused largely on the idea of existentialism and expressed what happens when the human existence has no meaning or purpose and therefore all communication collapses. Logical construction and argument give way to an irrational and illogical discourse and to its ultimate conclusion, silence. Two pieces that perfectly express the term of absurdity are Ubu King and Waiting for Godot.
At first glance, Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, appears to be an unavailing, pointless play whose only purpose is for comic relief. It is filled with off-topic conversations and awkward silences that seem to show no correlation. However, when the confusing plot is analyzed, it is revealed that the play is an analogy of the futility of religion. The use of language in Waiting for Godot serves to illustrate the theme that religion is incompatible with reason and only brings Vladimir and Estragon confusion and sadness.
In Du’s perspective, Godot owns the same status with the God, which is deem to save people from miseries but failed to appear again and again (Du 224). According to what mentioned in the first few paragraphs, the disappearance of Godot is accordance with the decline of the power of religion and the insane behaviors of Vladimir and Estragon also echo people in the troubled times when religions are no longer the vita important thing. They wait for Godot to give them a better future and take them out of the current life they lived but they make no efforts except waiting and praying. Redeemer is the eternal hope and image among human beings, especially in the troubled times, however, in the second half of the twenties century, the hedonism and money worship make people spend more time in libertinism or sit around, like Vladimir and Estragon, so that they lose the capability to save themselves. Moreover, the image of Godot can be interpreted as the meaning of life itself, which Vladimir and Estragon spends the whole time in the play to reach for but they fail to find Godot and know the real identity of Godot. The writer of the play, Samuel Beckett, is the advocator of the existentialism whose perspective is that philosophical thinking comes from human subject, which means that there is no preset meaning of life (“Existentialism”). In the play, Vladimir and Estragon do nothing but waiting the coming of the meaning of life, Godot, which is opposite with the viewpoint of the existentialism. Vladimir and Estragon have no idea that the meaning of life should be found from themselves but not the unknown person because the value, essence and meaning are both defined by human actions but not the illusory power. During the war years, the meaning of life was obvious, protecting our home