Samuel Beckett’s In Waiting For Godot Reading a work of literature often makes a reader experience certainfeelings. These feeling differ with the content of the work, and areusually needed to perceive the author’s ideas in the work. For example,Samuel Beckett augments a reader’s understanding of Waiting For Godot byconveying a mood, (one which the characters in the play experience), to thereader. Similarly, a dominant mood is thrust upon a reader in Beowulf.
These moods which are conveyed aid the author in conveying ideas to areader. In Waiting for Godot, Beckett uses many pauses, silences, and ellipses(three dots (. . . ) used to create a break in speech) to express a feeling ofwaiting and unsureness. There is a twofold purpose behind this technique.
For one, it shows that Vladimir and Estragon, the two main characters whoare waiting for Godot, are unsure of why they are waiting for him. Thisalso foreshadows that they will be waiting a very long time. In some cases in literature, an idea can only be conveyed properly ifthose on the receiving end of the idea are able to experience the feelingsthat a character is experiencing in the work. For example, in order for areader to feel how and understand why Vladimir and Estragon feel as thoughthey do while they wait, it is essential for that reader to eitherunderstand or experience the same feelings that Vladimir and Estragon areexperiencing. Vladimir and Estragon are waiting; waiting for Godot, to beexact; and Beckett wants the reader to feel as if he or she were waitingalso.
Along with the feeling of waiting that a reader may experience, heor she might also understand how Vladimir and Estragon feel at times:Unsure, not very anxious to move on, and constantly having to wait. Afeeling of timelessness is even evoked, allowing almost anyone from nearlyany time to understand Vladimir and Estragon’s predicament. Many times people may feel overwhelmed by a higher force unalterable tothem. This force may control something such as their fate. In theAnglo-Saxon culture, a popular belief was that of fate.
The writers ofBeowulf may have known that not all people believe in the power of fate. Therefore, to properly convey such an idea as the inevitability of fate inthe epic, the writers included events which, when read, are also”experienced” by the reader. For example, the narrator of Beowulf stateshow fate is not on Beowulf’s side. After many years of winning countlessbattles, Beowulf was killed by a dragon in a fierce fight.
While he wasfighting, and because the narrator had stated that fate was not on hisside, the reader could identify with Beowulf and feel how he may have atthe time: Overwhelmed, overpowered, and as if a force greater than he wascontrolling him (his fate). Moods that are created, such as that of longing or waiting, and fearor inevitability, in Waiting for Godot and Beowulf, respectively, hold adistinct purpose. The moods presented usually serve the purpose of helpingthe author express more fully an the idea or ideas that he or she wishes toconvey. Also, by conveying a universal mood, or one that nearly everyoneis able to comprehend and interpret, the work of literature’s longevity isaugmented.
This will further help the reader to interpret the work andunderstand more fully the moods presented.