Delineation of Vladimir - Waiting for Godot

715 Words3 Pages
Waiting for Godot presents a common theme in duality. From the initial pairing of unlikely partners, to the final debate regarding their odds at surviving suicide, events and people present themselves in pairs. While Estragon is short, thick, and doltish, Vladimir presents the recurring dichotomy by being tall, lanky, and intellectual. Vladimir’s verbal melee with Estragon consists of verbosity and theatrics, and Vladimir regards himself erudite and scholarly. Estragon is the essence of simplicity, and as such acts as a foil to Vladimir’s temperament. The other side of Vladimir that Beckett deliberately presents is an air of pseudo-intellectualism and uncertainty. He scoffs at Estragon’s struggle with removing boots, seeing it as a contemptible battle with a certain fate. He remarks “Funny. Nothing to be done.” (Beckett 8) mere seconds before Estragon proves him wrong, to which Vladimir suggests Estragon puts the boot back on. This is reflective of Vladimir’s unwillingness to concede his mistake – again, an indication of pseudo-intellectualism. One prevalent and frustrating quality of Vladimir is his self-absorption. Estragon’s attempts at conversation are always redirected towards what Vladimir wants to discuss. Vladimir carefully attacks Pozzo, calling him names and showing a general disdain for the posh life Pozzo seems to represent. This general disdain for people that are not him leads to an alienation of Estragon, in which Vladimir subtly belittles Estragon with a noticeable regularity. Vladimir is encouraged to change throughout the play as situations and individuals question his ideologies and idiosyncrasies. The first of these impetuses is a religious altercation in the beginning of the first act. Vladimir presents the question of faith, asking “Suppose we repented?” (Beckett 9) and then denounces the idea by questioning the credibility of the
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