Two Trains Running Essay

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Trudell is a doctoral student of English literature at Rutgers University. In the following essay, he discusses Wilson's nuanced critique of African American spiritual organizations and traditions, which in Two Trains Running do not tend to act in the genuine interests of poor blacks.

Two Trains Running is perhaps principally intended as an expression of the frustration and sense of tragedy on the part of lower-class, urban-dwelling African Americans who find themselves bypassed and sidelined by the civil rights victories of the 1950s and 1960s. Wilson creates a sense of doom surrounding even Memphis, who seems to have won a great victory in the amount of money that the city gives him for his restaurant. Taking instruction from Aunt Ester, the mysterious spiritualist who helps African Americans feel better about their problems, Memphis vows to go back and “pick up the ball,” or regain his lost sense...

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This section contains 1,748 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Two Trains Running Study Guide
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