What is the theme or one of the themes in Fences, by Ausgust Wilson?

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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One of the most important themes in Fences is death, \which Troy fights for much of the play. Another theme is that of responsibility. Tory is a father and a provider, who takes care of people. Yet he also breaches that responsibility by having an affair with another woman, Alberta. When she becomes pregnant, however, Troy takes responsibility for it, and when she dies in childbirth, he takes care of the child. Fences themselves are a major theme, as the title indicates. Rose imagines the fence around the house as a way to keep the family safe. But Troy imagines it as a way to fence in the ambitions of Cory, his son. Race, and the barriers that divide white from black (as in Troy's inability to play major league baseball) are also imagined in terms of fences. Finally, opportunities are crucial to the story. Troy had fewer opportunities than his son, and when Cory is offered a college football scholarship, Troy will not let him accept it, out of fear that his son willl outachieve him.


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