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Fences (The August Wilson Century Cycle) Hardcover – April 1, 2008


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Product Details

  • Series: The August Wilson Century Cycle
  • Hardcover: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Theatre Communications Group (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559363029
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559363020
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (124 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #881,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

August Wilson is the most influential and successful African American playwright writing today. He is the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Fences, The Piano Lesson, King Hedley II, Ma Rainy's Black Bottom, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Seven Guitars, Two Trains Running, Jitney and Radio Golf. His plays have been produced all over the world.

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Customer Reviews

Fences, a play written by August Wilson was exceptionally well written.
reader
I especially liked the relationship between Troy and his son Cory, because it very realistic to the way children were raised in that day and age.
duz cope
As mundane as the story may be, this is a story that is very real and true to life.
V.C.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 27 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on January 9, 2001
Format: Paperback
Fences, by August Wlison, is a play that potrays the many roles of an African-American family that lives during a difficult period of time when Africans were being segagrated. In the play, Rose Maxosn, a house wife in her early-fortys, has a difficult time handling her family. She always finds herself battling between the decisions that her husband, Troy Maxson, makes and with what she thinks is right. Throughout the play, life for Rose was a graet challenge, but even though the pain was great, she always holds her head up high and waits for better days. This play teaches us that being able to forgive and go on with your life potrays a lot of who you really are inside. When this script was placed in my hands, my head ached to the thought of having to read another boring book. To my surprise, when it was read out loud with great feeling, my heart jumped with excitment and joy. After I had gotten a sense of the characters feelings and language, I was unable to put it down. This book reached out to me like no other book has ever done before. The way that Rose was able to forgive so many inappropiate acts is very astonishing to me. I franckly admire Rose for being able to be a strong women and for sticking to what she says. I wish that everyone that reads this script is able to take a bit of sweetness from Rose.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Summer B. on March 1, 2000
Format: Paperback
"Fences," by August Wilson, is a wonderful mix of drama and comedy that emphasizes the tribulations and confusions people were going through, during the changing sixties. In this two-act play, Troy Maxson is a middle-aged African American who is struggling to raise a son, keep a family together and deal with the new desires and needs everybody is beginning to feel as social standards slowly begin to change. As a child growing up, Troy did not have a great father figure, and he was not able to persue his dream of becoming a great baseball player as he grew older, because of racial limitations of the time period. Now as things begin to change for the better, he is still afraid of these limitations and overcoming them. His son wants to play football, but Troy doesn't want him to. He wants him to get a job and become good with his hands. As he refuses to let his son play, he pushes him away. He begins to push his wife away too, because he feels he needs his own space and has new desires. This play becomes a struggle for Troy to try to pass on morals he thinks are right and to be a proud man in a time where hatred is strong and boundaries are being broken. Troy Maxson is having to change his ways according to change and he grew up doing what he could to survive, so changing after so many years of living a certain way to survive is harder than anything he has had to deal with before. Will he come out of it successful?
A wonderful blend of characters, hysterical, beautiful, bold, courageous and passionate; this play is sure to win your favor.
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25 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Kevin L. Nenstiel TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
From the opening scene we as audience members are dropped whole into the world of the characters in August Wilson's classic play. The dialect of the characters, the hints of jargon, and the references that aren't explained but simply ARE allow us to be immersed in his setting. This back porch, with its visible foibles (exposed icebox, half-built fence) make Troy Maxson, his family, and his friends into new beings that become larger than their own lives--and very like our own lives.
There is nothing in this play we don't all have to face from day to day. Work, marriage, family disputes, mental illness, adultery, violence, and more events populate this play as surely as the characters do. Yet the clear, Sophoclean way they are addressed makes them matter to us in an immediate, powerful way.
The play is broken up into two acts, comprising eleven scenes. The first ten take place over a span of a few months, while the final provides an epilogue some years later. Some modern theatre purists will balk at this many divisions, and yet the way Wilson makes them pop will let an audience that loves theatre to both enjoy and understand what's happening to the characters.
This is a difficult piece of theatrical literature, yet one of the most important and compelling of the last twenty years. For all its faluts (slipshod editing, internal contradictions, great length) it remains a valuable play, and one that hasn't received nearly the acclaim it deserves.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Alfred Johnson on December 23, 2008
Format: Paperback
The first couple of paragraphs of this review have been used as introduction to other August Wilson Century Cycle plays as well.

Okay, blame it on the recently departed Studs Terkel and his damn interview books. I had just been reading his "The Spectator", a compilation of some of his interviews of various authors, actors and other celebrities from his long-running Chicago radio program when I came across an interview that he had with the playwright under review here, August Wilson. Of course, that interview dealt with things near and dear to their hearts on the cultural front and mine as well. Our mutual love of the blues, our concerns about the history and fate of black people and the other oppressed of capitalist society and our need to express ourselves politically in the best way we can. For Studs it was the incessant interviews, for me it is incessant political activity and for the late August Wilson it was his incessant devotion to his century cycle of ten plays that covered a range of black experiences over the 20th century.

Strangely, although I was familiar with the name of the playwright August Wilson and was aware that he had produced a number of plays that were performed at a college-sponsored repertory theater here in Boston I had not seen or read his plays prior to reading the Terkel interview. Naturally when I read there that one of the plays being discussed was entitled "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" about the legendary female blues singer from the 1920's I ran out to get a copy of the play. That play has been reviewed elsewhere in this space but as is my habit when I read an author who "speaks" to me I grab everything I can by him or her to see where they are going with the work.
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