Fences

Pdf fan Tap here to download this LitChart! (PDF)

Raynell Character Analysis

The child of Troy and Alberta, Raynell is ultimately raised by Rose after both Troy and Alberta die. In this way, Raynell challenges the “fences” that Rose envisions as surrounding, protecting, and holding together her real family. At one point in the play, Rose tells Troy, upon learning of Raynell’s impending birth, that she’s never wanted anything “half” to enter her family. Raynell’s appearance in the world therefore stretches Rose’s ideal sense of a family unified by parental, biological blood, and Rose’s decision to raise him marks a broadening of her conception of what a family can be and how far her love can stretch.

Raynell Quotes in Fences

The Fences quotes below are all either spoken by Raynell or refer to Raynell. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Blackness and Race Relations Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Plume edition of Fences published in 1986.
Act 2: Scene 4 Quotes

I’m coming in and everybody’s going out…

Related Characters: Troy Maxson (speaker), Cory Maxson, Rose Maxson , Lyons Maxson, Raynell
Related Symbols: The Fence
Page Number: 81
Explanation and Analysis:

Troy speaks this line in the fourth scene of the second act. Lyons has just stopped by the Maxson house to drop off some money for Troy, who’s not yet there, and Rose tells him to put it on the table. As he leaves, Cory enters the yard; they talk briefly (Lyons apologizes for missing Cory’s high school graduation), and Lyons exits. Then, Troy enters the yard; as he approaches the steps to the house, Rose exits the house with Raynell, carrying a cake, and Troy says this line.

Though short and succinct, this is perhaps one of the most significant quotes of the entire play. It not only signals that Troy is starting to realize the division, the rift opening between him and his family, but also hints at the failure of the fence to keep the Maxson family together as one solid unit. While one goal of the fence—at least Rose’s intended goal—was to protect her family and enclose them in a space of their own, this ambition has utterly failed in the face of Troy’s betrayal of Rose. The fence speaks more to division and separation than unity or togetherness; it serves as a fault line with which to reference not some divide between the family and the world, but a divisive crack that runs between the family and itself.

A+

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other Fences quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Get the entire Fences LitChart as a printable PDF.
Fences.pdf.medium

Raynell Character Timeline in Fences

The timeline below shows where the character Raynell appears in Fences. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 2: Scene 3
Manhood and Fathers Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
...the ball game, awaiting Troy. When Troy enters the yard, he’s carrying his newborn child (Raynell), and calls to Rose. She enters from the house, and stands on the porch. Egging... (full context)
Manhood and Fathers Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
Troy then sits down on the porch with his infant daughter (Raynell), and says that he isn’t sorry for anything he’s done, since it felt right in... (full context)
Act 2: Scene 4
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
...and exits the yard. As Troy goes to enter the house, Rose exits it with Raynell, carrying a cake. Troy says to her: “I’m coming in and everybody’s going out.” (full context)
Act 2: Scene 5
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
Mortality Theme Icon
...its beginning. Troy has died, and it’s the morning of his funeral. Rose, Bono, and Raynell (now seven years old) are gathered at the Maxson household. Raynell is in the yard,... (full context)
Manhood and Fathers Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
...being distinctly militant, adding that Cory speaks with a “clipped sternness.” Cory says “hi” to RaynellRaynell doesn’t remember him—and asks if her mother is home. Rose comes to the door to... (full context)
Practicality, Idealism, and Race Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
...to go help at the church where Troy’s funeral will be held, and Rose re-introduces Raynell to Cory. Rose then tells Raynell to get ready for the funeral, and they both... (full context)
Manhood and Fathers Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
Mortality Theme Icon
Raynell re-enters the yard from the house, and says “hi” to Cory, asking him if he... (full context)
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
Mortality Theme Icon
...of her life, and watch Troy grow from it. She adds that, by the time Raynell was born, she and Troy had lost touch with each other. The phone rings, and... (full context)
Manhood and Fathers Theme Icon
Family, Duty, and Betrayal Theme Icon
Raynell enters the yard, and tells Rose that the reverend is on the phone. Rose exits... (full context)