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August Wilson: The Playwright and Mold Breaker

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“You’ve got to be right with yourself before you can be right with anyone else.” This is a quote that August Wilson knows all too well. In America’s beginning, there has been somewhat of a lack of a voice for the world that African-Americans live in. Whether it is in literature or in media, there is usually misrepresentation or some type of stereotype being shown to the public’s eyes about their culture. To rectify this situation, a numerous amount of African-American authors, poets, and playwrights write about their experiences throughout America’s inception. In his time period, Wilson was one of these voices who wrote out how he felt on the issues. His Pulitzer Prize winning play, The Piano Lesson, is an example of the literary depth he wanted to accomplish. However, with many things in the world changing how well does this man’s word resonate with today’s audience? How powerful are Wilson’s works and how do they teach his audience and be criticized by others?

Originally named Fredrick August Kittel Jr., he was born on April 27, 1945 in the Hill District of Pittsburgh. His father, a German immigrant, Fredrick August Kittel Sr., and his African-American mother, Daisy Wilson, along with his six other siblings lived together in the poor, immigrant region of the Bedford Avenue. His father was not around during his life and eventually his mother divorced him and remarried and moved the family to the mostly white suburbs of Hazelwood. Living in that community, they faced much bigotry and discrimination and Wilson faced much more when going through school. A turning point in his life was when Wilson was falsely accused of plagiarizing a 20-page report paper of the French Revolutionary, Napoleon Bonaparte, by his teacher and dropp...

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Works Cited

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"August Wilson Biography." Bio.com. A&E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 05 May 2014.

"August Wilson Biography." Bio.com. A&E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 05 May 2014.

Downing, Micheal. "The Life and Work of August Wilson." N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2014.

Drowning, Micheal. Is August Wilson Racist. Rep. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 May 2014.

The Plays. Rep. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 May 2014.

The Plays. Rep. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 May 2014. .

Saltzman, Simon, and Nicole Plett. "August Wilson versus Robert Brustein." U.S 1 Newspaper. N.p., 16 Apr. 1997. Web. 2 May 2014.
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