A Raisin In The Sun
3 Pages 668 Words
“A Raisin in the Sun”
In “A Raisin in the Sun,” Lorraine Hansberry shows that having dreams is essential to the lives of the characters in the play. In particular, the main character Walter Younger has idealistic dreams of better lives for himself and his family. When Walter is introduced in the play, it appears that he is frustrated with his current position in life. His frustrations stem from his inability to provide for his family and his lack of control in making his dreams of a better life become a reality. Throughout the play Walter struggles with these dreams and exhibits greed and foolishness. The consequences of his actions force him to grow up and become the man that his family needs him to be. Walter realizes the selfish nature of his dreams and learns that he must put the dreams of his family as a whole before his own.
In Act I, Scene 1, Walter speaks of his dreams and appears to have the best intentions for his family. He believes that an investment in the liquor store business with his friends is the ideal way to lift them out of poverty. The desperation with which he talks about these dreams even causes his wife Ruth to have a slight change of heart about them. The urgency in his voice shows his serious need for change and prompts her to bring the subject up to Mama. “Walter Lee say colored people ain’t never going to start getting ahead till they start gambling on some different kinds of things in the world – investments and things.” (p. 1815) In 1959, the time period of the play, most black men in America faced struggles and a lack of opportunity in trying to become providers for their families. Without his dreams and the resources to achieve them, Walter feels that his existence in the world is insignificant.
However, Walter’s complete determination to have the means to invest in the liquor store begins to overshadow the good intentions of his plans. He wants to use the insurance ...
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