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Wednesday, April 26 • 11:35am - 11:55am
Even A Blind Man Can See

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My thesis analyzes the character of Troy Maxson, the protagonist of August Wilson’s Fences. Wilson’s play presents the reader with an African American man during the 1950’s who is damaged by his past experiences and failures in his life. Fences provides readers with a valuable life lesson: even sometimes people that can see are truly blind. Troy is not able to cope with his failures and the changes in society around him, which is the same as being blind because he is living in the past and cannot envision a future. This is the reason Troy Maxson cannot approve of the other character’s choices in their lives and forces them into his philosophy. Troy’s father’s life did not come with much success and neither has Troy’s and Troy is trying to pass this down to his son, Cory. This displays the coming of age within the revolution of damaged black manhood. My thesis argues that Troy’s past experiences hinder him from accepting the reality of the other characters lives and form him into this controlling and lonely figure. Troy’s control over the characters in the play is a double-edged sword because although it might make him happy at particular moments, he has made everyone dislike him and driven them away. At the end of the play, Troy is in need of help and no one is there, leaving him no choice but to bear this burden alone. Troy’s past experiences and flawed sense of manhood make him into a self-centered and governing father, husband and friend. These traits impact the choices of the play’s other characters and eventually drive Troy into his grave.

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Wednesday April 26, 2017 11:35am - 11:55am
232 Karpen Hall

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