Wilson’s Play Fences

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In August Wilson’s play Fences, Troy allocates similar characteristics as Oedipus of a tragic hero, they both presume they can conquer fate. Troy responds in rage when the truth deciphers.He believes he can outmaneuver his death by building a wall surrounding his house. However death still exist and he cannot avoid his fate.In Sophocles play Oedipus the king and the secondary source Oedipus is characterized as a tragic hero because he assisted in furthering his demise. Throughout the play Sophocles demonstrates his Hamartia:a fatal flaw leading to the downfall of a tragic hero. Oedipus is an imperious man who expects his demands to be fulfilled which culminates in his downfall. Artisoles characteristics are employed to depict Oedipus’s demise.

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Pride is the greatest deadly sin. Oedipus is overly confident and is conscious of his power but seeks to be praised for actions. He is eager to figure out the mystery of who killed King Laius. “And justly you will see in me an ally, a champion of my country and the god.” (157-158). Oedipus dedicates himself to exhibit traits of a good King and attempts to connect with the people of Thebes emotionally. His loyalty to Thebes forces him to become blind to the conspicuous which causes him to make illogical choices.According to the secondary source why tragedies are alluring “excessive pride causes him to make critical mistakes and from those mistake comes disaster and downfall.” On the journey to solving the mystery , Oedipus accuses many of being a traitor to him. Although, Oedipus is way too arrogant to acknowledge his delusions.

Despite Oedipus choosing to contradict the prophecy, he possessed a predetermined fate which means he cannot avoid the inevitable. Oedipus’s prophecy was that he is doomed to kill his father and sleep with his mother. He intended rather to escape his destiny than to face it. Oedipus dissociates himself from his own family and flees to prevent this catastrophe but instead on the road he kills a man. “It has but not for you, it has no strength for you because you are blind in minds and ears as well as in your eyes.” (417-419). Teiresias informs Oedipus that although he can physically see, he is blind to his surroundings.

Truth is not something outside to be discovered, it is something inside to be realized. quoted by Osho, the Buddha. Oedipus acknowledges his mistakes and blinds himself because he considered blinding himself was an appropriate punishment, since he could not see what was occurring around him and he felt humiliated and ashamed for what he did. Dashed them on his own eyeballs, shrieking out such things as: they will never see the crime I have committed or had done upon me.(1391-1393). He cannot bear to see anymore of life.

In conclusion, Sophocles displays 3 characteristics of a tragic hero which are tragic flaw, free choice, and hero increased awareness. Oedipus’s egotism cause him a different destiny. At the ending of the play, Oedipus comes to a realization of what he has done and gouges his eyes out. Ultimately, Oedipus’s Pride demolishes him. By him being ignorant, it lead to a very shocking relevance and resulting in an unpleasant ending.

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Wilson's play Fences. (2019, Aug 08). Retrieved October 2, 2022 , from

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