Gender Stereotypes In Beneatha

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Gender stereotype, or the over-generalization about the characteristics of an entire group based on gender, is evident in any culture or community, no matter how much gender equality is promoted. Brought on by centuries of tradition, it had become a pre-established belief that women were inferior to men, in that the dominance of men was already considered to be a norm of society. Though women in the past were responsible for household chores and raising children, a new age called for new ideals and a need for change in the attitude towards women. In the Southside of Chicago in the mid 1950’s, the members of the Younger family act as a prime example in portraying the difficulties associated with going against conventional expectations. The two prominent female characters…show more content…
I’m not worried about who I’m going to marry yet- if I ever get married” (Hansberry, 21). The use of “if” in her sentence points to the fact that marriage isn’t something that she wants to commit to, and that she aspires to be a woman that is independent from a man, and not tied to the household. Beneatha’s drastic difference in ideals represents the new face of America as more women, regardless of race and social class stood up for what they were passionate in, ignoring the stereotypes set out for them.
The appearance of both characters in A Raisin In the Sun help to display the dissimilarity of thought between the two, and the difference in their lifestyles. Though living under the same roof, each individual presents their own goals and aspirations as to who they want to become, making the characters in the Younger family diverse, holding various viewpoints on what a successful life is. Throughout the play, Ruth and Beneatha act as foil characters and highlight the two distinct ways in which they reinforce and challenge the strict gender roles present during Chicago in the late
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