In Lorraine Hansberry’s play, A Raisin in the Sun, take place in the late 1950s in Chicago Illinois the younger experiences the struggles of living during the Jim Crow era. African American families have always struggled to find their place within a white society. Throughout the play the audience sees the differences between the three generations through Mama, Walter and Beneatha. Ruth, Walter’s wife, acts as a stabilizing force in the family who acts as a peacemaker and caretaker within the family.
In a review of the Broadway production, Lorraine Hansberry noted the problems and misconceptions about something and jotted them down to make them seem like better ideas. Ideas can sometimes make better ideas. Simple honesty is the most important thing in the world. Especially if people are nice to you they deserve to be treated nice back. Hansberry captures the historical reality of iving in Chicago in the 1940’s in her play A Raisin In The Sun. The Great Migrations from 1940-1960 brought hundreds of thousands of blacks from the South to Chicago where they became an urban population, and created churches, community organizations important businesses, and great music and literature. Their goal was to live in a neighborhood where blacks could pursue life with the same rights as
“A Raisin in the Sun” by Lorraine Hansberry, is a play about a black families experience in 1950s South Side Chicago. The story revolves around what happens to the family when Lena Younger, the matriarch of the family, receives a ten thousand dollar life insurance check upon the death of her husband. Everyone from the family has different plans for what they want to do with the money. Lena Younger serves as the head of the family. She is Walter and Beneatha’s caring mother so they and Ruth call her Mama.
The play A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry debuted on Broadway in 1959, and the movie was made in 2008. “A Raisin in the Sun” is about the Younger family, the fifth generation of lower-class African-Americans living in Chicago’s Southside. They are faced with problems such as racial discrimination, poverty, and conflicting dreams. As the family decides on how to spend the insurance check of $10,000 from Walter’s father’s death, these problems cause many conflicts to rise. Reading the 1959 play and the 2008 movie, I have realized certain similarities and differences in how the story plays out.
“A Raisin in the Sun,” written by Lorraine Hansberry in 1959, was the first play ever produced on Broadway by an African-American woman and was considered ground-breaking for it’s time. Titled after Langston Hughes’ poem “Harlem,” sometimes known as “A Dream Deferred,” the play and the subsequent film adaptations are honest examinations of race, family, poverty, discrimination, oppression and even abortion in urban Chicago after WWII. The original play was met with critical praise, including a review by Brooks Atkinson of the New York Times where he wrote, “For A Raisin in the Sun is a play about human beings who want, on the one hand, to preserve their family pride and, on the other hand, to break out of the poverty that seems to be their fate. Not having any axe to grind, Miss Hansberry has a wide range of topics to write about-some of them hilarious, some of them painful in the extreme.” The original screen adaptation released in 1961 was highly acclaimed in its own right, and was chosen in 2005 for preservation in the United States of America National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for its cultural and historical significance. While both stage and screen portrayals were highly acclaimed there are some similarities as well as some marked differences in each interpretation.
In the novel A Raisin In The Sun, Lorraine Hansberry brings in multiple characters for brief periods. Each character impacts the story in his or her own specific way. In Hansberry’s realistic fiction novel, she allows the reader to experience what it is like to live in a time period where African Americans and Whites are not considered equals. She gives in depth scenarios, showing what it is truly like to be an African American in Chicago during the 1950’s. The characters in the story experience a multitude of issues involving society, culture, and family.
Through the use of the historical lens, looking specifically at the economic struggles, the struggle of unequal opportunity, and the housing covenant that African-American’s faced in the 1950’s, Hansberry’s message of A Raisin in the Sun is revealed: the perseverance of an ethnic minority in a time of racial discrimination. A Raisin in the Sun is set in a time of great racial discrimination, the 1950’s in the united States. This featured racism towards those of color or non-caucasians, and the struggles commonly faced by the African-American family is shown through the eyes of the Younger family through the writing and experiences of Lorraine Hansberry.
In A Raisin in the Sun, a play written by Lorraine Hansberry, the audience was able to obtain a sense of the struggle for the American dream. We are introduced to the Youngerś a black family living in the Southside of Chicago around the 1950’s. Each member of this family has their own meaning to what is the American dream. A Raisin in the Sun teaches us that even though life might be full of conflicts, it is important to not give up on our dreams.
A Raisin in the Sun was an innovative play for its era. Lorraine Hansberry produces in the Younger household one of the first authentic portrayals of a black household on an American stage, in an era where primarily black spectators just didn’t exist. African-American characters, typically minor and comedic, mostly hired racial stereotypes before this play. Lorraine Hansberry, nevertheless, displays a whole black household in an authentic view, one that is unbecoming and anything but comedic. She makes use of black dialect all through the play and raises significant concerns and struggles, for instance poverty, bigotry and racism.
The play “ A Raisin In The Sun “ wrote by Lorraine Hansberry is a inspiring play about the Younger family. A typical African American family in the late 1950’s trying to make life better for themselves. They’re a family trying to overcome the difficulties and obstacles that comes with being black in America in that time. Obstacles such as lynchings,segregation,racial discrimination and overall the difficulties that comes with being black in America. With external problems within the family the characters also internal conflicts within themselves. From seeing the family fight with one another to loving each dearly it was big character development. In my essay i will discuss how the Younger family dealt with their conflicts and discuss the resolutions they came up with.
Throughout the 1950s, people of color have struggled with achieving their dreams due to the lack of equality that is portrayed in that specific time era. It has been a constant battle for equality for all races and genders over the course of time. In Lorraine Hansberry’s play A Raisin In the Sun the character Beneatha struggles with her racial inequality, education, and gender stereotyping. These specific struggles are the blocks she deals with trying to achieve her dream.
A Raisin in the Sun addresses major social issues such as racism and feminism which were common in the twentieth century. The author, Lorraine Hansberry, was the first playwright to produce a play that portrayed problematic social issues. Racism and gender equality are heavily addressed throughout the play. Even though we still have these issues today, in the 1950’s and 60’s the issues had a greater part in society. Racism and gender have always been an issue in society, A Raisin in the Sun is an important piece of American history during that time period. The famous play shows the audience the life it was like to live as a black female, and shows the struggles that the Young family faced being the first African American family to move into a white neighborhood. This play is considered a
"Education has spoiled many a good plow hand" (Hansberry 103). This quote is significant because it is applying that education is better than being a hard-worker. A Raisin in the Sun, written by Lorraine Hansberry, is taken place in South Side, Chicago between World War II and the present. The main focus of this play is about a poor African-American family who has a chance to escape this lifestyle with a ten-thousand-dollar life insurance check, but is not desired to live in a "white" neighborhood.
Chicago served as a home to numerous walks of life in the 1950’s, and much of the differences in realities were based on differences in race and people’s opinions of segregation. Lorraine Hansberry’s play A Raisin in the Sun is based off of real life experiences, and it authentically tells the story of an african american family that strives for equality and The American Dream. Walter Younger, the father of the family, battles with deferred dreams of his own and for his family. Lorraine Hansberry’s play A Raisin in the Sun and Nina Simone’s song “I Wish I knew How It Would Feel to Be Free” both portray Walter’s emotions throughout his daily struggles with his family as they dealt with segregation and destitution.
Lorraine Hansberry’s “A Raisin in the Sun” led a great quest for the Younger household. Raisin is set in subsidized housing in Southside Chicago, in which three Black female relatives live and interact with their brother, husband, and son Walter. African Americans were frowned upon before the writing of “A Raisin in the Sun”. However, it her notorious story provided individuals of multiple races new hope for life. In 2006, Diana Adesola Mafe provided the world with her opinion of “A Raisin in the Sun”. Diana Adeolsa Mafe wrote an article and named it “Black Women on Broadway: The Duality of Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun and Ntozake Shange's for colored girl” (Mafe, 2006). In addition to Lorraine Hansberry and Diana Adesola Mafe, other African American women confronted these issues in the 1950s among the uncontained political division and Civil Rights efforts to resolve conflict.