Fences Critical Review

Topics: African American, Martin Luther King, Jr., Black people Pages: 2 (436 words) Published: November 5, 2011
Isaac Jenkins
English III AP
9 September 2011

Critical Review
Fences by August Wilson is a book based on the lives of an African American family in the 1950’s. Each family member has to deal with the other in their own ways. A father, Troy, that hasn’t gone far in his life takes his frustration out on the people that are closest to him. The book brings out the reality of a regular black man living with heartaches and regrets. It explains that there aren’t only two kinds of black men. All African American men don’t carry themselves like Martin Luther King Jr. and the other half aren’t like Stanley “Tookie” Williams. Fences brings the life of an everyday African American man and his battles to an on stage play and book.

Wilson’s viewpoint of the book in the beginning allows the reader to become comfortable with Troy even though he uses foul and mannish language. Troy has an affair in the book with a woman named Alberta while he is married to his wife, Rose. Wilson’s father was a German immigrant that came to America. He was never really involved in Wilson’s childhood and left his wife with 6 children. Troy’s father in the book was described and imagined as a gruesome, disgusting man. It’s possible that the character was based on Wilson’s real father.

Wilson uses baseball as an astonishing analogy to the problems and situations of the characters in the book dealing with Troy. Troy’s son, Cory, is a very talented football player that has an opportunity to play at a college and Troy’s jealousness of his son’s accomplishments backfires on Cory. Troy’s affair breaks his wife down to where she doesn’t speak to him for six months and even longer when the baby of his lover Alberta, who dies from birth, is born. Troy’s best friend, Bono does not come over to drink and laugh anymore because of Troy’s ignorance and rage.

The book’s argument and examples to support it are all wonderful attributes that make a magnificent book and play. Regardless of...
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