As a civil rights activist, Stokely Carmichael once said, “We are told,” If you work hard, you’ll succeed”- but if that were true, black people would own the country. We are oppressed because we are black- not because we are ignorant, not because we are lazy, not because we are stupid, but because we are black!” This quote is still relevant even to this day, blacks are still considered a minority and they get treated differently simply because of the color of their skin. People continue to treat others by the color of their skin rather than their character. In Lorraine Hansberry’s play A Raisin in the Sun, the interaction between the themes of race and dreams demonstrates that your race can affect the dreams that you have and what you choose to do about it.
Lorraine Hansberry's drama A Raisin in the Sun takes place in the 1950s on Chicago's South Side. The play illustrates the lifestyle of an African American family dealing with financial troubles. Lena (Mama), her son Walter Lee, his wife Ruth, their son Travis, and Lena's daughter Beneatha are the play's key figures. Both the movie and the play displays an excellent picture of life in South Side Chicago, but the movie's representation portrays the authors purpose more accurately. This is due to the film's visual presentation of body language and facial expressions, which provides additional insight into the characters and situations throughout the film.
By comparison, they will do anything to be able to fulfill their American Dream. Without a doubt, Walter would give up anything for wealth, since money runs the world. While Walter was having a conversation with his mother she says, “So now its life. Money. Money is life.
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 by Lorraine Hansberry reflects the dreams deferred Hansberry experienced in her confrontation against racial discrimination during her childhood. As Hansberry wrote A Raisin in the Sun to spread awareness about Black home life and the barriers of buying a home, she integrated many experiences she had during her childhood into the play. When Hansberry was a girl, her family attempted to buy a home in a zone where mostly whites lived in Chicago. Due to redlining, denying an eligible applicant for a loan due to the color of their skin, Blacks were deterred from buying a home in this area.
(Hansberry 561). On page 561, Walter finally admits to his mother that he never went to the bank and instead, invested the money in the liquor business. This has a lot of impact on Benetha because she lost $3,000 for schooling as well as Travis. It affects Travis because previously on page 547, Walter says to Travis, "Just tell me where you want to go, and you'll go". Walter promises Travis that the money Mama gave Walter will change their lives forever.
In the play, A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry and the speech, “I have a Dream”, by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. have many similarities to having many dreams, a urge for power, and a want to make a change in the world for the many years to come. In Lorraine’s play, Lena Younger, is a mother who has two children and a step daughter with a kid all living in a two bedroom apartment. Lena wants nothing more than to give her family a better life. In Dr. Martin Luther King speech he wants nothing more than to give the world a better life.
“I have a dream one day this nation will rise up and live up to its creed, we hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal. I have a dream” (Martin Luther King Jr). Martin Luther King had a dream to end racism while that dream is pretty much been accomplished but can be better. A Raisin In the Sun is about achieving dreams but the dreams trying to be achieved by Walter Lee Younger and his family. In A Raisin In The Sun, Lorraine Hansberry shows that Walter's Dreams can be achieved in a positive way throughout the book these actions are shown through his interactions with his mom, wife,son, and his whole family.
(114-115) By giving up the money, Walter is shown to be spontaneous and quick to trust. He made a quick decision about giving Willy the money, without even thinking about the consequences, which shows his spontaneity and trust issues. He also didn’t even think to put any money away for Beneatha and he just trusted Willy to get the license before actually getting to know him. The play A Raisin in the Sun, shows how Walter settles on a brisk choice to give his Mamas insurance money to the character Willy Harris so he could purchase an alcohol store. Thus, his choice accounts Willy Harris to steal the cash which causes an apathetic temperament in the story and makes lost expectation in the family.
They do not want to sacrifice their own dreams to please the others. Unwilling to make a sacrifice proves to bring more animosity in a family as shown in A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry through conflict involving money and how the characters handle their actions. Walter’s dream is to use the money to open up his own business even if it goes against his family’s wishes. Walter argues, “.... he’s
Despite the fact that dreaming of a liquor store is shallow, Walter’s motivation to be able to support his family helps reconcile his somewhat immoral hopes. Later, Walter shows the idiocy of his plan to own a liquor store when he gets drunk. In act 2, scene 2, Walter borrows Willy Harris’s car and drives around Chicago for two days, then “just walked”, and finally “went to the Green Hat” (2.2 105). Through his actions, Walter shows that he is immature and cares more about pretending to be rich than his job that would allow him to provide for his family.
Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun follows the struggles of an African American family living in a neighborhood in 1950s South Side Chicago. The play discusses several issues pertaining to African Americans of the time, such as poverty and discrimination. One of the major themes of the story is the search for a sense of belonging; whether that’s a sense of belonging to the continent of Africa, a neighborhood in Chicago, or on a personal level within the Younger family. The play explores this theme through its characters Beneatha, Mama and Walter.
A Raisin in the Sun is a play, which consists of three acts for a total of six scenes. From the very beginning, the plot line begins with the Younger family waking up, going about their morning as they normally do. The family living in the small apartment consists of Mama, Beneatha, her daughter, Walter, her son, Ruth, Walter’s wife, and Travis, Walter and Ruth’s son. The apartment that accommodates this family consists of a small kitchen, containing one small window, a living room, which also serves as Travis’ room, and two bedrooms, one for Walter and Ruth, the other shared by Mama and Beneatha. In the kitchen window lays a potted plant, second to only family in Mama’s most prized possessions.
Reader Response: 3 “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.