Summary And Symbolism In August Wilson's Fences

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In August Wilson’s Fences, it should come as no surprise that the fence Troy is building throughout the course of the play holds multiple points of symbolism and importance, from Troy’s innate need to keep things at arm’s length, to an overarching symbol of Rose and Troy’s marriage, to a subliminal motif of the boundaries that kept Troy from his dream of reaching the Majors. For Troy, the fence is viewed as a chore and a nuisance at the beginning of the play. Troy shirks the chore to go “listen to the ball game” at “the Taylor’s” (33). On page 34, Cory retorts that his father has claimed they were to work on the fence “the last four or five Saturdays”, but his father “don’t never do nothin’”. By page 71, his old friend Bono is so convinced Troy will never finish the fence that he makes a pricey deal with Troy saying “when you finish building this fence for Rose… I’ll buy Lucille (Bono’s wife) that refrigerator”. However, by the end of the play, the fence becomes much more than a tiring chore to Troy. …show more content…

Troy’s speech directed to death is an example of the distance he wishes to attain through his fence, telling death “I'm gonna build me a fence around what belongs to me. And then I want you to stay on the other side” (85). Shortly after this, during a dispute with Cory over Troy’s role in their home and in Cory’s life, Troy tells Cory to “go on and get away from around [his] house” (98). To which Cory responds he will “come back for his things” which Troy informs him will be “on the other side of that fence” (99). The importance of this lies in the symbolic exile of Cory from Troy’s life. Once again he wishes to push something he’d rather not face to the other side of his fence to be forgotten about for as long as

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