Using Aristotle’s descriptions of Tragedy, I classify Fences by August Wilson as a tragic play. The elements of tragedy, Troy Maxson as a tragic hero, and tragic plot were evident throughout the play. Also, the feeling of catharsis at the end-which is proper of tragedy, was clearly identifiable.
I. Fences fits into the tragic genre based on the points given by Aristotle. In Poetics, he defines tragedy as "the imitation of an action that is serious and also as having magnitude, complete in itself." • Aristotle’s idea is that the plot has a beginning middle and end and all parts follow each other in concise fashion. o In the beginning, the hero is a garbage man, who previously was given a chance to participate in professional baseball, becomes the first black to drive a garbage truck, is loved by his wife, looked up to by his friend, Bono and receives demanded respect from his sons Lyons and Cory. o In the middle, the hero confesses to his wife that he is going to be a daddy to another woman’s child. He struggles with his son Cory and ultimately loses the love and respect of his family. He needs to ask Rose to help him raise his baby and be her mama. He also admits to the infant that he is scared. Act II Scene 3 p. 73 “And right now your daddy’s scared cause we sitting out here and ain’t got no home.” o In the end, the hero dies. By then a lonely man who is no longer respected by his family nor has the admiration of his friend. Troy’s believes fate is his downfall. He thinks the color of his skin is the decisive factor in the workplace, the playing field and the street. (Pereira 42) • A complex plot includes reversal and recognition.
o Troy is happy and stress free when with Alberta. Even when he tells Rose, she continues to stay with him until later when she issues an ultimatum. Act II Scene 1 pg. 66 “…I’m responsible for it. I locked myself into a pattern trying to take care of you all that I forgot about myself.” His belief of providing for his...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document