A Raisin in the Sun: Character Analysis

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Character Analysis

Have you ever found yourself worried sick about money to the point where you can no longer think straight? Or have you ever thought that if you had a million dollars, everything in your life would be absolutely perfect? The fact is, a million dollars isn't reality for the everyday average person. The average person works hard for a living barely scraping by. We are reminded of this throughout Lorraine Hansbury's play A Raisin in the Sun. One of the main themes in this play is that money can't buy happiness. The character who best conveys this theme is Walter Younger, a lean, intense young man in his middle thirties, who works as a chauffer in order to support his family. In my opinion, this character fits this theme because of how he believes money can provide true happiness for him and his family. However, certain actions change his mind in the end, allowing him to realize that there might be more to life then money.

For example, in Act I, scene I, we are introduced to Walter and his family who lived in a small apartment in Chicago's Southside. We also learn that the family is waiting for a check to come in the mail consisting of ten thousand dollars. Over breakfast one morning, Walter explained his worries to Ruth about his sons future. He had a premonition earlier that morning saying, "I'm thirty-five years old; I been married eleven years and I got a boy who sleeps in the living room, and all I got to give him is stories about how rich white people live…"(642). This quote indicates Walter's yearning for money, and his shame of being a lower class black man not able to financially support his family. He believed that if his family was wealthy it would provide them happiness along with a secure future for his son. Ruth, however, ignored his premonition because she was more focused on her family, and not the money. She understood the importance of family and felt content with what they already had.

Furthermore, Walter continued to...
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