As Troy’s friend Bono comments, “some people build fences to keep people out . . . and other people build fences to keep people in.” The partially built fence surrounding the Maxsons’ yard represents the conflicts of the play. Rose, Troy’s wife, wants a fence to keep her world safe, to keep the family close, but to Troy, the fence represents confinement, so he has delayed its completion. The bond between Rose and Troy, like the incomplete fence, fails to prevent Troy’s straying with another woman. Troy’s inner fences and the fences that the white world has built around him trap him in his meager-paying job. The literal fence, that Troy and Cory were to have built together, could have strengthened their relationship, but Troy’s procrastination and Cory’s dreams of winning a football scholarship prevent this outcome. However, Troy, too, desires to keep things out; he wants to keep out Death, with whom he had once wrestled and won. Ironically, Troy completes the literal fence after his complete alienation from his wife and son, and his fence finally fails to keep out Death.