In FencesTHE BLUES
A DEFINITION…
“Blues is a musical form and genre that
originated in African-American
communities in the "Deep South" of the
United Stat...
Storytelling through music
The foundation for rock & roll, hip-
hop, country, and other genres.
WHAT ARE THE BLUES?
SOME HISTORY
Complete the reading of “What Is
The Blues?” with a partner.
Be ready to share your thoughts with
the class.
PAIRED READ...
How does
this apply
to our
reading of
“Fences”?
AUGUST WILSON
& THE BLUES
“One of [Wilson’s] triumphs of invention
was how he used the blues. A music
mostly relegated [(dismissed)] to the
nationa...
“‘The music is a specific cultural response of
black America to the world, the circumstances
and the situation in which t...
 “On the surface very little seems to happen in a Wilson play,
which has led many people to conclude that he is not much
...
What’s important about Wilson’s use
of language in his plays?
TO RECAP…
Wilson was inspired by the blues,
which is a form of music that tells
stories of (African American) human
experiences.
W...
"Blues." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 21
Apr. 2014. Web. 21 Apr. 2014.
Flatow, Sheryl. "August Wilson and the Power
...
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Fences the blues

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Fences the blues

  1. 1. In FencesTHE BLUES
  2. 2. A DEFINITION…
  3. 3. “Blues is a musical form and genre that originated in African-American communities in the "Deep South" of the United States around the end of the 19th century” (“Blues”). Came “from spirituals, work songs, field hollers, shouts and chants, and rhymed simple narrative ballads” (“Blues”). WHAT ARE THE BLUES?
  4. 4. Storytelling through music The foundation for rock & roll, hip- hop, country, and other genres. WHAT ARE THE BLUES?
  5. 5. SOME HISTORY
  6. 6. Complete the reading of “What Is The Blues?” with a partner. Be ready to share your thoughts with the class. PAIRED READING
  7. 7. How does this apply to our reading of “Fences”? AUGUST WILSON & THE BLUES
  8. 8. “One of [Wilson’s] triumphs of invention was how he used the blues. A music mostly relegated [(dismissed)] to the national past forms the emotional underpinning for many of his plays” (Ross). What does this say about how Wilson uses the blues?
  9. 9. “‘The music is a specific cultural response of black America to the world, the circumstances and the situation in which they’ve found themselves,’ said Wilson” (Ross). “‘I create worlds out of the ideas and the attitudes and the material in the blues. I think the blues are the best literature that blacks have. It is an expression of our people and our response to the world. I don't write about the blues; I'm not influenced by the blues. I am the blues’“(Flatow). What does this mean?
  10. 10.  “On the surface very little seems to happen in a Wilson play, which has led many people to conclude that he is not much concerned about plot. But anyone who listens carefully soon realizes that so much is happening, as emotions, ideas, philosophies, outlooks and beliefs tumble forth.  “‘I get it all the time, that I don't care about plot," Wilson says. "That's not correct. The language and conversation are the plot. Some people say my plays are formless. But my plays could not exist, could not work, if they were not plotted. If you are looking for a certain kind of play, then what I write is not a 'real' play. But that's based on what you understand a play to be. I'm sure Picasso came up against the same thing. People looked at his work and said, 'What is that? That's not really art.' It depends on where you're coming from and what your responses are. The conventional play moves along from plot point to plot point. In my plays the plot points are buried in the language, in the development of the characters. But they have to be there; otherwise you'd never arrive at the end’” (Flatow). WILSON DEFENDS HIMSELF
  11. 11. What’s important about Wilson’s use of language in his plays? TO RECAP…
  12. 12. Wilson was inspired by the blues, which is a form of music that tells stories of (African American) human experiences. Wilson feels language is the most important part of his plays. His characters’ dialogue develop the stories in his plays. TO SUMMARIZE…
  13. 13. "Blues." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 21 Apr. 2014. Web. 21 Apr. 2014. Flatow, Sheryl. "August Wilson and the Power of Blues - Playbill.com." August Wilson and the Power of Blues - Playbill.com. N.p., 22 Mar. 1996. Web. 21 Apr. 2014. Ross, Michael E. "August Wilson’s Century in Blacks and Blues." Msnbc.com. NBCNews, 2 Oct. 2005. Web. 21 Apr. 2014. WORKS CITED

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