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August Wilson’s “Fences” Review

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    August Wilson’s Fences is a tragic and serious play set in 1950’s Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. that portrays the struggles and sometimes disastrous decisions made in the life of Troy Maxson, Troy Maxon, a black sanitation worker in his mid-fifties who loves to tell tall tales full of hyperbole, algory, and distorted truths. It is through the lens of these tall tales of Troy’s that we get most of the imigarey in the play. Wilson’s theatrical realism brings a greater fidelity of real life to the page and the stage in the tradition of Arthur Miller and Sam Shepard. Wilson’s flawed modern day tragic hero is both victim of circumstance beyond his control and victim of his own pride and stubbornness. The roles of protagonist and antagonist are somewhat counterintuitive in F3ences , Although Troy Maxson is the source of all destruction and wrong doing in the play, he is our stories protagonist and Cory Maxson a charachter that has been wronged but does no wrong is the antagonist. This may seem like a role reversal but Troy is the character whose fate is most closely followed by the audience, and who is opposed by the antagonist, the likable and good hearted Cory.

    There are quite a few conflicts, internal and external, that are revealed to the audience in the span of the play. Themes of racial struggle, family bonds, masculanity and the burden of ones past are explored in the last decade of Troy Maxson’s life Troy’s main conflicts in life arises from his strong opposition to Cory’s desire to play college football on a scholarship and his infidelity to his wife Rose. Troy’s family is further strained by Troy himself when it becomes known to Cory and Rose about Troy’s affair with Alberta and plans to continue the affair because Alberta is pregnant. The family’s trust has fully disregarded by the time Rose and Cory discover that Troy commits his brother Gabe to a psychiatric hospital.

    Fences follows traditional plot structure of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, denouement, and resolution, The exposition takes place at the beginning of act one, scene one. Here, in what happens to be the most lengthy scene in the play, scene one serves to establish setting, characters and their circumstance, and dramatic elements that will repeat again and again in the play. The scene opens on a Friday: Troy and Bono enter Troy’s front yard after a long day of work. We learn through the dialogue while Troy and Bono start to drink in front of the house that Fridays are paydays and we get the feeling they do this every payday. Before we meet Troys wife Rose we learn about Alberta when Bono asks Troy if he’s been sleeping with Alberta in a round about and indirect way.

    The rising action occurs when Troy tells the truth to Rose about his affair with Alberta.Rose and Troy get into a fightTroy becomes physically abusive to Rose so Cory tries to defend his mother.Troy physically overpowers Cory and warns him he has one more strike before he is out.

    Tensions come to a boil during the climax when Rose tells Troy that Alberta died having a baby girl. Troy, a broken man, begs Rose to help raise his baby girl. Rose a grees to do so but Rose agrees but states that she is no longer with Troy. After the climax comes the the falling action where Cory tells his father how he feels about Troy’s treatment of Rose and Gabriel which winds up into another physical fight between Troy and Cory. Troy wins the fight and kicks Cory out of the Maxson household. The denouncement serves to wind down the tensions of the play. This happens seven years after Cory leaves the Maxson household. Cory returns for Troy’s funeral as an older, more mature U.S. Marine. Raynell meets her older brother for the first time and when alone they sing a song aboout a dog named Blue im rememorinze of Troy. The resolution of the play happens in the final moments when Gabriel unexpectedly shows up on the day of Troy’s funeral with his trumpet. St. Peter will open the gates of heaven for Troy’s spirit The play closes with the gates of heaven opening up for Troy.

    Dramatic Symbols Raynals garden, Death, the Devil, the fence Troy and Corry build around the property, Compare and contrast the movie to the play. In the play, they all take place in the backyard. Unity of Time, Place, and Action So they don’t all take place in the backyard Fences” maintains a theatrical sense of scenes and acts; despite its realistic settings and some moments that expand the action into the street and further into the city,The performances in “Fences” lack intimacy; they feel as if they’re being addressed to audiences in the far balconies, not to one another as actors

    The fences we put up in our minds and hearts confine us and prevent us from being truthful with ourselves and woth the ones we love.

    Troy get into a fightTroy becomes physically abusive to Rose so Cory tries to defend his mother.Troy physically overpowers Cory and warns him he has one more strike before he is out.

    Tensions come to a boil during the climax when Rose tells Troy that Alberta died having a baby girl. Troy, a broken man, begs Rose to help raise his baby girl. Rose a grees to do so but Rose agrees but states that she is no longer with Troy. After the climax comes the the falling action where Cory tells his father how he feels about Troy’s treatment of Rose and Gabriel which winds up into another physical fight between Troy and Cory. Troy wins the fight and kicks Cory out of the Maxson household. The denouncement serves to wind down the tensions of the play. This happens seven years after Cory leaves the Maxson household. Cory returns for Troy’s funeral as an older, more mature U.S. Marine. Raynell meets her older brother for the first time and when alone they sing a song aboout a dog named Blue im rememorinze of Troy. The resolution of the play happens in the final moments when Gabriel unexpectedly shows up on the day of Troy’s funeral with his trumpet. St. Peter will open the gates of heaven for Troy’s spirit

    The play closes with the gates of heaven opening up for Troy.

    Dramatic Symbols Raynals garden, Death, the Devil, the fence Troy and Corry build around the property, Compare and contrast the movie to the play. In the play, they all take place in the backyard. Unity of Time, Place, and Action So they don’t all take place in the backyard Fences” maintains a theatrical sense of scenes and acts; despite its realistic settings and some moments that expand the action into the street and further into the city,The performances in “Fences” lack intimacy; they feel as if they’re being addressed to audiences in the far balconies, not to one another as actors The fences we put up in our minds and hearts confine us and prevent us from being truthful with ourselves and woth the ones we love.

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    August Wilson’s “Fences” Review. (2021, Nov 30). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/august-wilsons-fences-review/

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