Story Related To A Middle Aged African-american Male Named Troy Maxson

The story highlights the effects of unrealized dreams and how disillusionment can have effects across generations. Troy’s hurt from a prejudiced society’s inability to allow a black man to play professional baseball leaves him with an unfulfilled life and motivates his thwarting his son’s dreams of playing collegiate football. Troy is so focused on preventing Cory from following in his footsteps that he is unable to see that his actions are in actuality paving a path that leads Cory to a life that parallels the very life he is trying to save Cory from.

In the play, Troy’s unfulfilled dream of becoming a pro baseball player due to racism haunts him through his life and affects his decision to not let Cory play football.

Although Cory is given a scholarship to play college football, Troy is unable to see past his own harsh disappointments of a career in sports. He cannot envision a world that will let a black man play sports because his world, when he was younger, did not.

While arguing with Rose about letting Cory play football, Troy states that his decision to not allow Cory to play college football stems from his own disappointing past with baseball. “But I don’t wish him a thing else from my life. I decided seventeen years ago that boy wasn’t getting involved in no sports. Not after what they did to me in the sports” (Wilson, 39). In this quote, Troy states to Rose that he is afraid that history will repeat itself and Cory will have the same fate as he did.

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Troy does not want Cory’s life to resemble his any part of his own life and does not “wish him a thing else from my life” in order to save Cory from the same hurt he endured.

Troy does not want Cory to have hope in a life of sports because Troy is convinced that Cory’s dreams will be shattered as his were. The failures of Troy’s past greatly influence his decision to not allow Cory to play football and potentially repeat the failure of becoming a professional athlete. Therefore, Troy preventing Cory from playing football exemplifies how shattered dreams of a generation can pass into the next. It is evident throughout the book that Troy’s myopic “tunnel vision” on himself prevents him from seeing what his family really needs and therefore damages his family relationships. Troy is so focused on saving his son from the pains and mistakes he made and endured, Troy does not realize that he is forcing Cory to live out the same life he did. Throughout the play, Troy and Cory are at odds about Cory playing football. When Cory tries to defy his father and pushes past him, the fighting comes to a climax and Troy kicks his son out of the house. “You a man. Now let’s see you act like one. Turn you behind around and walk out this yard.

And when you get there in the alley…you can forget about this house” (Wilson, 86). When Cory stands up to Troy, Troy acknowledges that Cory sees himself as an adult who can make his own decisions and answers by telling Cory to take care of himself because he is now a man. Ironically, this fighting starts when Troy tries to spare his son from reliving the pain he felt when his own dreams of sports were taken from him. However, in efforts to save his son from hurt, he is unable to see that his actions are forcing Cory to live the same life as he did. Troy’s father kicked Troy out when he stood up to him and Troy kicks out Cory for the same thing. Troy is so focused on his own history that he cannot see that the world has changed and his son has a real opportunity to live a very different life than the one he did via college football. Troy’s solipsism prevents him from giving his son the one thing he really wants for him, a life with true opportunity and one that is very different from his own.

Although Troy’s stubbornness can be seen as selfishness, Troy’s actions are driven by paternal responsibilities and fear for his son. The way Troy handles his responsibilities, especially with Cory, is motivated by Troy’s desire to give his son more than he had. After learning from the A&P manager that Cory no longer works there, Troy becomes enraged that Cory had been lying to him when Cory was said he was going to work, but in reality Cory was going to play football. “That boy walking around here smelling his piss…thinking he’s grown. Thinking he’s gonna do what he want, irrespective of what I say” (Wilson, 49). Troy got Cory the job as a way to provide a reliable and, in Troy’s point of view, realistic future. However, when Troy realizes that Cory did not take the opportunity to pursue the same dream that disappointed Troy, Troy becomes afraid that his son is immature and unable to make good choices. Troy’s actions to force Cory into a life that Cory does not want can be viewed as selfishness.

However, Troy is simply trying to pave a path for Cory that he can build a life on instead of being disillusioned when his sports career fails. Troy’s fear of his son leading the same life he did not only drives Troy to force Cory to forget his football dreams and take a more practical path but also this same fear creates a path that could lead Cory to a life that is exactly the same as his own. The only difference is that Troy’s baseball career was cut short by a prejudice society but Cory’s football dreams are crushed by his own father.

Troy makes decisions to prevent Cory from living the same unfulfilled life he has led without realizing that he is actually guiding Cory to live the same life as his own. His inability to see past his own history and hurt prevents him from seeing that the world has changed and the very opportunity that was denied him is being offered to his son. Troy rejects the one thing that could actually give his son the life he wants for him, and the one he wanted for himself, because he is too scared of Cory getting hurt as he did. Therefore, Troy paves a path that could lead Cory to live the same life he does.

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Story Related To A Middle Aged African-american Male Named Troy Maxson. (2022, May 10). Retrieved from

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