Fences Essay

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Analysis of Fences by Wilson Completed by: University of This paper analyzes and discusses the play by August Wilson titled Fences, mainly its characters, major themes, dialogues, and social issues that are drawn upon by the author. Wilson wrote Fences in 1983 not only to address his society concerns but also to prove to himself that he could raise a single character to a much grander scale. Initially he had no plans to write this riveting domestic drama, which ultimately won the most honors of any play in Broadway history, including a Tony for Best Play and a Pulitzer Prize. In fact, having already completed Ma Rainey's Black Bottom and Jitney!, he had intended to follow his own strategy, which was next to write Joe Turner's Come and Gone and then go on to complete The Piano Lesson. But Wilson listened to the advice of his circle of theatre professionals who encouraged him to bring some variety to the then well-populated and unwieldy patterns of construction familiar from Jitney! and Ma Rainey's Black Bottom. Fences is situated at a juncture when what's left of an old guard is dying away, thus making room for a new order. During the eight-year span of events in the play, the characters experience the impact of several important historical events to which they adapt or of which they become frustrated victims. Although the play proper begins in 1957, Troy's recollections reach as far back as the 1900s when he struggled under the cruel authority of a sharecropper father who was himself a product of the Reconstruction era. As soon as Troy came of age, he became part of the steady trickle from southern farmlands to northern cities. The play opens as two middle-aged black men make their way home to celebrate another week's end. Troy Maxson and his friend Jim Bono collect garbage for a living. For eight hours a day, they bend, they stoop, and they hoist cans of refuse to

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