My essay is on Waiting for Godot. This essay is about deconstruction based on either Existentialism(fate/freewill), Marxism(bourgeoisie/proletariat), Psychoanalysis[superego(duty)/id(desire)], Gender studies(hero/antihero), Postmodernism(metatheater/metahistory/irony/similacra). I will attach the essay requirements and it will be more clear.
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ENL 102: The Third and Final Essay Assignment
The essay should be a well-organized, well-supported analysis, around 6-8 pages, typed, and
double-spaced. It should include a title and proper MLA in-text citation. Provide a work citation
on which edition of the play you used, so I know. [Again, make sure your essay is formatted as a
Word Doc.]
The assignment is based on Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. The introduction of your
paper should briefly summarize the play, mentioning the characters and key moments of the plot,
and then explain how the play deconstructs the structure of drama and theater (think in
terms of Aristotle’s Poetics). Please quote and cite a passage from the play to support your
Then, as a thesis, I am giving you some leeway: deconstruct the play from another theories we
have discussed in class.
So, I am only looking for one approach of deconstruction; however, you need to show the
structure first, before you can deconstruct it. Let me explain:
If you critique the play’s characters in terms of the binary opposites found in existentialism, the
first body part should be about whether a character controls their life through free will (do they
live to their full potential? do they have regret?) or are they fated: Then, in terms of
deconstruction, how does this play challenge these notions of free will and fate? So, you are
not supporting existentialism, but commenting on the play’s comment about free will and life’s
potential in terms of the character’s action (or inaction). Focus on two characters and quote and
cite passages as support.
If you wish to deconstruct the play in terms of Marxism, again the first body part of your essay
should show the binary structure of the bourgeoisie/producers and the proletariat/working class:
how does power dictate actions and control over the characters? How are the characters
“trapped” in their position? Then, by means of deconstruction, how does the play consider
the binaries of class structures as insignificant, un-centered? How does it deconstruct the
value of the rich and the poor? Focus on two characters (Pozzo and Lucky are the obvious
choice) to illustrate your points. Quote and cite for support.
But that’s not the only possibilities: You can deconstruct the play in terms of:

gender roles (how are men depicted and deconstructed in the play, by way of heroes/antiheroes),
modernism (how is the work postmodern? how does it approach time and space and the
Grand Narrative of History),
colonialism (which would be the same as Marxism, just with the Master/Slave dialectic),
even psychoanalysis (consider the id of these characters, like Vladimir and Estragon, and
whether they have or even should have such desires).
Whichever one you wish. Just remember that deconstruction questions the structural binary
oppositions. It is a challenging concept, but one that proves rewarding and liberating.
Finally, in your conclusion, present the value of the play today. Why does it resonate with
persons placed in dire situations, such as after Hurricane Katrina or in the San Quentin Prison?
How can it relate to the average person, like yourself, living in a postmodern world?

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