A Raisin In The Sun Analysis

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Lorrain Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun is a play depicting the life of a typical black family living in Chicago during the 1950s. The title of this play comes from the poem by Langston Hughes “Harlem” which Hansberry placed in the preface of her play. The first line of the poem “Harlem” asks about a dream deferred and goes on to describe what might happen to that dream. The characters in Hansberry’s play reflect some of these descriptions as their dreams are set aside. A Raisin in the Sun shows the Younger family as they struggle to fulfill their dreams. In the first act it is said that the family is waiting for an insurance check after the father’s death. Throughout the play there is dispute between in family about what the money should be used for. Walter Lee begs Ruth to tell Mama let him use to follow his dreams of owning his own business. Beneatha and Ruth tell him that it’s Mama’s money and she can do what she wants with it. Mama, who initially wasn’t sure what to do with the money, decides to use …show more content…
In Walter’s case, it does. Throughout act one he begs and pleads for Mama to give him the money to invest in a business venture, a liquor store that Mama disagrees with, with Bobo and Willy Harris. Being refused, Walter feels misunderstood and “explodes” (Hansberry 1005). Walter can also be described as “fester[ing] like a sore” and “drying up like a raisin in the sun” (Hughes). After finding out Mama used the money to buy a house, he becomes a shadow of his former self. He skips several days of work going out to drink instead (Hansberry 1025). After seeing Walter in such a state, Mama decides to give him the remainder of the money only asking him to put some aside for Beneatha’s education. Disobeying Mama, He gives all the money to Willy Harris to invest. Walter loses everything when Willy Harris runs of with the money and his dreams are completely shattered and he loses all hope (Hansberry