African American Female Characters And The Way Essay

2252 Words Nov 30th, 2016 10 Pages
One of the most important aspects of a play is the characters. The plot cannot be successfully portrayed to an audience unless the characters are well written. The personality of a character can have a major impact on the way a plot flows. Amongst other things, an individual’s personality is shaped by their experiences. Not only does this apply to the main characters in a play, but this is important for the supporting characters as well. The supporting characters often influence the development of the protagonist. This paper will focus on African American female characters and the way they are portrayed, specifically the main female characters in plays written by August Wilson. Does the time in which the plot takes place have an effect on the way African American women are portrayed through various characters? Does August Wilson portray his female characters in a stereotypical way or is there a certain truth to the way the characters carry themselves? To research this topic, three plays will be analyzed. August Wilson’s “Pittsburgh Cycle” is a collection of plays that take place every decade during the 1900s. Through this collection he is able to showcase the lives of African Americans during their respective decades. For this paper, the main African American female characters in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Fences, and King Hedley II will be compared. It is expected that as the characters in these plays are a direct reflection of the decades in which they were written.
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