Raisin in the Sun Essay

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According to Nicole King, "Race is a word and a category that can simultaneously denote a person's color, caste, culture, and capacities, oftentimes depending on what historical, political, or social forces are at work". A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry is an attempt to examine the impact of racial discrimination on the life of an ordinary black family. It is also a testament of this family struggling to manage with racism and poverty in the Washington Park Subdivision of Chicago's Woodlawn neighborhood. People of all backgrounds lived in America and came to America dreaming of social, educational, economical opportunities as well as political and religious freedoms. During the 1950's achieving the high-quality lifestyle for Black Africans was clearly impossible. The goal of Black Africans was to achieve the quest of the "American Dream".

Certainly racism was the largest social issue to the African Americans during the 1950's. It appeared in a variety of ways in A Raisin in the Sun. First, consider the jobs the characters had; Walter Lee was a chauffeur, and Mama and Ruth are domestic workers. African Americans who lacked education were given few options to work in subservient positions. However, Beneatha was trying to avoid that by attending college to be a doctor. Another example is the visit from Mr.Lindner, representing Clybourne neighborhood. Even though he was polite and respectful, his message was clear. They did not want the Younger family in their midst.

A Raisin in the Sun foreshadows many of the problems and issues that would divide American society in the 1950's. The first impact is a lack of economic opportunity for black families. All the characters except Beneatha worked in common jobs. The setback was that Beneatha wanted a college education to become a doctor, but even her brother questioned that when he says, "Why don't you just be a nurse, like everyone else?" Second, consider the location that Mama chose for the home she...
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