Characters Discussed (Cyclopedia of Literary Characters, Revised Third Edition)
Troy Maxson, a garbage collector who is fifty-three years old at the outset of the play. He is a large man with powerful hands, a forceful personality, and a lust for life. After fighting with his father and leaving home at the age of fourteen, he became a thief to survive. He became an excellent baseball player while serving a fifteen-year sentence for murder. Embittered because racist practices prevented him from playing major league baseball, he later insists that his son Cory abandon his dream of playing football and learn a trade. Troy loves his wife, maintains a cool distance from his children, and actively protests discrimination at his workplace. He entertains and inspires his friend Jim Bono with his combination of jovial vulgarity and wisdom, and he seeks to rediscover lost passion with a mistress, Alberta. Unapologetic after fathering a child with her, he becomes isolated from his family in the years preceding his death in 1965.
Rose Lee Maxson
Rose Lee Maxson, Troy’s wife, forty-three years old at the beginning of the play. She admires her husband’s strengths and tolerates his faults but comes to regret her lack of assertiveness in his presence. Although her arguments with Troy rarely progress beyond chiding, she strongly opposes him in her support of Cory’s interest in football, and she virtually severs communication with him after discovering that he has impregnated his mistress. She agrees to rear the child after Alberta dies giving birth.
(The entire section is 632 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of Fences Characters. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!