Essay about Fences: American Football and Troy

Submitted By o0sunkissedqt0o
Words: 798
Pages: 4

“People who consider themselves victims of their circumstances will always remain victims unless they develop a greater vision for their lives.” - Stedman Graham
This quote rings very true with the concepts and themes evident in the play Fences, written by August Wilson. The play centers around the protagonist, Troy, as he goes about his day to day life, overcoming struggles that are shaped by the experiences of his past. A sense of heaviness plagues Troy’s persona throughout the play as bits of his past are slowly revealed, and the reader is left with a sense of understanding as his character is rounded out. Failure and regret are feelings that are easily picked up on during Troy’s interactions with his family. Cory has dreams of playing college football and has the opportunity to meet with a recruiter, but Troy refuses to allow Cory to meet with him or continue to play, which destroys his chances of going any further with it. It seems to me that Cory sees college not only as a way to possibly have a career as a pro football player, but to also break out of the debilitating poverty that African Americans seemed to be stuck in at that time. What some people don’t understand is that when the dreams of one person or generation are shattered it can often have a negative effect on the next generation. Troy never had the opportunity to fulfill his dream of being a pro baseball player, because of his race, and when the major leagues finally became desegregated, Troy was too old to pursue a career in it. He saw Cory’s dreams as foolish and impractical and wished to see him be skilled in a trade and not be so caught up in his dream of playing sports so he can “make it” in the real world. I believe that Troy put a stop to Cory’s dreams out of both bitterness and love and for his own well-being. I do believe that Troy really did want what is best for Cory, but I think that there are undertones of bitterness that led Troy to act the way he did toward Cory because he was not able to take hold of his own dream. It seems that Troy has feelings of being unaccomplished and unsuccessful, and now that he is older, there is not much he can do to change that. Unlike Cory, Troy’s first son, Lyons, does not cease to follow his dreams, even when his father tells him to find a “real” job. It seems as though Troy might be able to relate more to Lyons than he can with Cory because, even though Lyons is doing what he loves, which is making music, his career as a musician is not taking him anywhere. Troy can relate to this because his career as a baseball player never ended up being a reality. Both Lyons and Troy had the potential to do great things with their lives but their dreams became shattered and almost useless. In reading about how Troy was not happy…