Differences between "Daddy" and "Fences"

Categories: Sylvia Plath

There are differences between “Daddy” by Sylvia Plath and “Fences” by August Wilson and obvious similarities between these two stories. “Fences” and “Daddy” have common themes and situations that both protagonists must deal with it. In both stories’ crime, race, and discrimination are both prominent, Fences and Daddy follow the pattern of general elements where the protagonists must face inner turmoil, family struggles, financial suffrage, and even racial discrimination. Fences by August Wilson and the poem Daddy show us the character’s dreams and It illustrates the positive and the negative outcomes of those dreams and goals in life.

According to Troy from “Fences,” he states “I am not worried about death. I have done seen him. I done wrestled with him” ( Troy, Act 1, Scene 1). Troy signifies that he is not worried about death if anything when the time comes where he must face death he will fight for his life. Troy has dealt with extreme hardness, Troy’s father and prison have built a barrier around him, he is tied down by his past and his sense of responsibility.

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Troy’s past and inner conflicts affect his present and his overall relationship with those around him. On (page 898), Troy states, “Like you? I go out of here every morning. However, my but putting up with them crackers every day. Cause I like you? You about the biggest fool I ever saw. (Pause) It’s my job. It’s my responsibility! You understand that?” (page 898). Troy’s repressed anger of not being accepted to the Major leagues due to his skin color and past experiences has led to conflict between Troy and Cory.

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Troy’s bitter feelings of those past experiences limit any positive interaction between father and son. The central conflict is how Troy in many ways repeatedly repeats his mistake with his father while raising Cory. The hope that Cory will be able to break the cycle. The overall main idea of “fences” is to break down barriers that restrict change from happening and growth from happening, especially in the case of Troy who has been constrained by his past and a racist society.

Moreover, “Daddy” by Sylvia Plath, the speaker faces conflicts between family and society. The speaker’s father died when she was young, and she been suffering since then, his image that he left behind had caused a dominating effect, causing inner turmoil, leaving the speaker to have negative aspects of her father and a lack of communication between father and daughter. According to Sylvia, she said, “if I’ve killed one man, I’ve killed two the vampire who said he was you and drank my blood for a year, seven years if you want to know. Daddy, you can lie back now” (page727). What she means is that his marriage with Ted Hughes was not good and for seven years her husband is drawing her blood like a vampire. In both “Fences” and “Daddy” there is some lack of communication between the parent and child, due to this it limits any positive interaction. In both stories, the children have to face problems between their fathers due to the past lingering feelings that were never resolved. Plath describes her father as a train because his father was like a shadow, he was not there when she was sad or being thinking about commending suicide this is a syndrome called attempted suicide. According to Sylvia Plath, she said,” there’s a stake in your fat black heart and the Villagers and stamping on you. They are dancing and stamping on you. They always knew it was you. Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I’m through 1962.”(pg725). The meaning of the ending shows that her past no longer haunts the speaker it is more of the speaker bidding adieu to her father and in a way letting go of their history.

Moreover, between the two stories there is a lack of communication between the parents and their children, the poem that Sylvia Plath wrote “Daddy”, after her father’s death, was released after her death, her marriage was not good, even though her life was not good she kept fighting and kept writing many poems. She is one of the most popular writers in the poetry of all time. For example, “poem focuses on Plath’s relationship with her father. Her father was incredibly cruel to her, but she also greatly misses him. She uses Nazi imagery to compare herself to a Holocaust survivor. The poem also discusses the effects it had on her adult life, with Plath seeking an abusive husband to remind her of her father. Plath expresses her frustration at the death of her father, both wanting him to come back to life but also loathing him” (By Sylvia Plath). What this quote signifies is that in the poetry “Daddy” she puts her past experiences and expresses how she had much frustration about the death of her father.

Similarly, in Fences, we see the other side of Troy and his family. Fences can be devoted in two pieces of work, number one is the perfect book, and the words and experiences adapted in the book and the thought and characters that August Wilson portrayed in “Fences.” However, whether or not it’s. The illustration and imagery used in the book or the acting in the movie, both are very different but are as equally very dramatic to see and very emotional too. According to Fred Mazelis, “Despite this, Wilson gave us in Fences the story of a family whose problems and trials are for the most part universal. The issue of class oppression, and how that shapes the difficulties between fathers and sons and husbands and wives, is what gives the movie version of this play its timeliness and its strength” (1). What that author is implying is that when Wilson was alive, he gave us Fences which showed the various shapes that families come in and the difficulties between those individual’s in a family.

In fact, in both stories, there are many issues between fathers and sons, or daughters and sons. In many stories that connect to these two stories is” boys and girls,” by Alice Munro, and this story is very emotional too but is not dramatic like Fences or Daddy, which are more emotional. In the story there was a young tomboy, who has lived her entire life on a farm, her father was a hunter, and her mother didn’t pay attention to her daughter. One of the problems that her mother had is that she disliked her daughter that way she was a tomboy. Her mother did not like her personality, especially how her daughter dressed as a boy and worked with her father on the farm to take care of the horses. Munro, similar to the main character of Boys and Girls, grew up on a farm with her mother and father, a fox and mink farmer. This theme describes the oppression against women, and how mistreated they are during this era in the story. She begins to realize that she has to accept her fate, she no longer protests the stereotypes.

In both “Fences” and “Daddy,” the characters portrayed must face society and oppression surrounding them. Whether its oppression against women, oppression against blacks, or dealing with a society that limits any progression for those who are not of the norm, all of these dilemma’s pop up in the stories. In both stories I read, there are very dramatic and very emotional, and much crime and it looks like it is a true story that the author who wrote those writing mean something to the people and concentrate more on their stories and understand them how they struggle through life. Although racism, women rights, human rights, and discrimination is not as active as it was before, it is still evident. Because of protesters who used words instead of violence such as Martin Luther King Junior and Rosa Parks, it had brought up the civil rights movement, followed up by M.L.K who had stated the ” I have a dream” speech which represented equality for all. Even today it’s a continuing battle to fight for one’s rights, racism, sexism, and much more still exists today, however just like the stories there are ways to break those barriers that society inflicts on individuals, that is why individuals must find their way through the hate and aggression in the world in order to grow and change because if there is no growth it limits change from happening.

In conclusion, what these stories have in common is the lack of communication between father and daughter/son, anxiety, suicide, and on the other hand in fences, we see much lack of dramatic issues between Troy and Cory. Moreover, the disconnection between father and son and the butyral of Troy. In between those two stories we have “Boys and Girls,” we see a shared sense of a mother who doesn’t understand her daughter about her personality her stereotype and her gender roles the girl is trying to find herself is like the movie Mulan she decides to have her reflection of who she is. It’s just supposed to express how Mulan does not know who she is supposed to be and whom she does not fit with her society, so she tries to hide it but it slips out, and she makes a mess of things. She wants to know her path in life because what she sees in the mirror does not feel like what or who she is. The comparison is intact and a lot of the audience when they read “Fences” and “daddy” and “Boys and Girls” and even in the movie Mulan can see the feelings portrayed. In my point of view what I see that all of the authors I read is very interesting to read and understand each character have different styles and their personalities have they will act and try to personalities the character who he/she is and concentrate in their point own view. What people think about the book, movie, poems, and trying to express themself who there are inside and out you are very powerful in your personality. When you are going around the world and explore the kind of people around the world who like to read, and they reflect the story and try to imagine the story. According to Rollo May he said, “communication leads to community, that is, to understanding, intimacy and mutual valuing” (1.) what this mean is that the lack of communication between the 3 stories “daddy”, “fences”, and “boys and girls”. What the author is trying to tell us is a lot of these stories have a lot in common to the lack of communication with son, daughter, fathers, mothers. It is important for guardians to have some sort of connection or communication with their children, without any communication it limits any sort of positive interaction between a parent and child. Therefore, it is important to communicate.

Works Cited

  • Mays, Kelly J. portable 12th. 12th ed., New York, New York, 2010.
  • Wilson, August. “Fences.” fences, 3 May 2016, www.coursehero.com/lit/Fences/quotes/Ocampo,
  • Julian De. “Sylvia Plath’s work expresses the alienation brought on by gender roles of the fifties and sixties. “

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Differences between "Daddy" and "Fences". (2019, Dec 17). Retrieved from http://studymoose.com/differences-between-daddy-and-fences-essay

Differences between "Daddy" and "Fences"

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