Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin In The Sun

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“What happens to a dream deferred?” Langston Hughes’ poem, directly links to conflicts characters go through in Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun. The Younger family experiences a lot of dreams deferred, mostly because they exist in a lower social class and their inferior status holds them back. Society has come a long way from the situation in the 1950s, and there have been numerous positive changes. Women in today’s world have a lot more opportunities than they did back then. According to Genevieve Wood, “The wage gap between men and women is now almost non-existent.” Also, America has had an African American president for almost eight years. The reason all of this positive change has occurred is do to pieces of literature such…show more content…
Beneatha is a bright young person. She’s only twenty so she’s still figuring out her way of life, but she has a positive ambition in her desire to be a doctor. She also treasures very clear views about her culture and heritage. When George comes to pick her up for a date and makes negative comments about her Nigerian clothes and her hair, which she has styled in a more traditional manner, she shoots back at him, “I hate assimilationist Negroes… someone who is willing to give up his own culture and submerge himself completely in the dominant… oppressive culture” (Hansberry 81). Beneatha is unique. Her personality causes her to not want to conform to society and desire to stand out and be truly herself. This response she has to George’s attitude also reveals that she is strong and confident in herself, and will not be pushed around by someone who disagrees with her. Later, when they get back from the date, George says to Beneatha “You’re a nice looking girl… Guy’s aren’t going to go for the atmosphere- they’re going to go for what they see… I want a nice… sophisticated girl… not a poet” (Hansberry 96). This is the double standard between genders that existed during the 1950s. George basically says to Beneatha that he doesn’t care what she has to say. He’s only there for her looks. Due to the fact that Hansberry portrays Beneatha as a strong intelligent woman, caring about her only for her looks would be a huge waste. She deserves to be equal to any man. Therefore, due to the characterizations of both Walter and Beneatha, Hansberry depicts the negative effects of putting men and women in different social classes with different levels of power, and this creates a positive
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