Cover image for August Wilson's Fences : a reference guide
August Wilson's Fences : a reference guide
Shannon, Sandra Garrett, 1952-
Publication Information:
Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, 2003.
Physical Description:
xvi, 201 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library PS3573.I45677 F434 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Fences is the story of a responsible yet otherwise flawed black garbage collector in pre-Civil Rights America who, in August Wilson's hands, rises to the level of an epic hero. Deemed a generational play, it mirrors the classic struggle of status quo, tradition, and age, versus change, innovation, and youth. During its 1987 Broadway run, Fences garnered four Tony Awards, the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, and the Pulitzer Prize. It has been produced around the world and is one of the most significant African-American plays of the 20th century. This reference is a comprehensive guide to Wilson's dramatic achievement.

The volume begins with an overview of Wilson's aesthetic and dramatic agenda, along with a discussion of the forces that propelled him beyond his potentially troubled life in Pittsburgh to his current status as one of America's most gifted playwrights. A detailed plot summary of Fences is provided, followed by an overview of the play's distinguished production history. The play's historical and cultural background and themes are explored, as is Wilson's dramatic art. The reference closes with a look at the critical and scholarly reception of Fences and a bibliographical essay. Included are rare photos from the play's Broadway premiere and its 1999 premiere in Beijing.

Author Notes

SANDRA G. SHANNON is Professor of African American Literature at Howard University. Her previous books include The Dramatic Vision of August Wilson (1995), and her essays have appeared in such journals as African American Review, College Language Association Journal , and MELUS .

Table of Contents

Ideas Art
Bibliographical Essay
Works Cited

Google Preview