Waiting for Godot
Waiting for Godot Truth Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
VLADIMIR But you say we were here yesterday. ESTRAGON I may be mistaken. (Pause.) Let's stop talking for a minute, do you mind? VLADIMIR (feebly) All right. (1.143-5) ESTRAGON (with effort) Gogo light—bough not break—Gogo dead. Didi heavy—bough break—Didi alone. Whereas— VLADIMIR I hadn't thought of that. ESTRAGON If it hangs you it'll hang anything. VLADIMIR But am I heavier than you? ESTRAGON So you tell me. I don't know. There's an even chance. Or nearly. (1.188-92)
Vladimir and Estragon are barred from even this act – that of suicide – because of an uncertainty as to whether or not it will work. In the theme "Choices," we look at how these two men consistently make "decisions" to act, yet are then somehow barred from actually doing anything. It may be that uncertainty is the barrier between choice and action.
VLADIMIR Well? What do we do? ESTRAGON Don't let's do anything. It's safer. VLADIMIR Let's wait and see what he says. ESTRAGON Who? VLADIMIR Godot. ESTRAGON Good idea. (1.193-8)
The men use Godot as their reassurance that objective truth is coming soon, or at least someone with the authority to tell them what to do. This should clear up their issues of uncertainty. Of course, this assumption is incredibly ironic since the men can’t be sure of Godot’s arrival (or existence, or name, or form, and so on).
ESTRAGON What exactly did we ask him for? VLADIMIR Were you not there? ESTRAGON I can't have been listening. VLADIMIR Oh . . . Nothing very definite. (1.202-5) ESTRAGON And what did he reply? VLADIMIR That he'd see. ESTRAGON That he couldn't promise anything. (1.210-2)
Even Godot is unsure! If Godot is a real omniscient, omnipresent God, then none of these statements can be true. If he is a figment of the men’s imaginations, their security blanket figure of certainty and truth, why do they assign to him all these doubts?