Society in the 1959 was full of racial discrimination. White and blacks were still living in their own "areas", the public as a whole was very slow to accept the concept of mixed neighborhoods blacks and white living together. This book, A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Vivian Hansberry, tells the story of a lower-class black family's struggle to gain middle class acceptance in the Southside of Chicago. The Younger family of five, four adults and one child live in a cramped apartment in one of the poorer sections of town. The dream of owning your own business and having all the money you will ever need is a goal held by many in society, then and now. Walter Lee Younger becomes obsessed with his dream of a business venture that will give him financial and social independence, after getting and losing the money that will help this dream become reality he realizes that pride and dignity are more important for him and his family.
Walter is obsessed with the insurance check that the family is waiting for, ten thousand dollars, will solve all his financial and social problems. The fact that the money is really his Mama's because of the death of his father complicates the issue. But he points out "He was my father, too!" (38). Walter wants Mama to give him the money so he can open a liquor store with two friends. He feels as if this will finally allow him the opportunity to provide all the material things, necessities and luxuries for his family. Walter wonders, why shouldn't his wife wear pearls'. Walter keeps hounding his wife, mother, or anyone else that is around. He is so fanatic about his dream, that he is uncaring to his family. He talks non-stop about his dream but still shouts; "WILL SOMEBODY PLEASE LISTEN TO ME TODAY!" (70). Walter is so addicted to his dream that it overshadows everything else that is going on.
Walter is so selfish that as the story unfolds and Walter realizes that Mama has made a down payment...
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