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Free MonkeyNotes Summary-A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry-Notes
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THEMES

Major Themes

One major theme of the play is the importance of dreams; each member of the Younger family is driven by them. Mama longs to have her own home in a nice part of town, away from South Chicago; she does not want her grandchildren to grow up in a place where there are rats. Beneatha dreams of getting a good education, becoming a doctor, and marrying a nice man. Walter wants to have a successful business so that he can rise above the poverty he has always known.

Closely related to the dream theme is the theme of pride. Even though the Youngers are a poor black family, they are all proud of their values and morals. They often speak of the pride of Big Walter, Lena's former husband. She too is proud enough to want to live in a nice house in a white neighborhood. Even when her family is threatened by prejudiced whites from the neighborhood, she is too proud to back down from her decision. Beneatha is also proud. She works hard at school and believes that she can become a doctor. Walter too believes in himself. He is sure he can be successful in business. When his partner steals all of his money, he almost gives in to despair. In the end, he regains his pride and decides that the family should go forth with the plans to move into the new house.


Minor Themes

Minor, but important, Themes of the play are the cruelty of discrimination and the strength of family ties. The Youngers, simply because they are black, are not wanted as neighbors in a white community. But because of the closeness of the family, they stick together, even in difficult times, to make their dreams come true. They prove that family ties are more important than money.

MOOD

The prevailing mood of the play is serious with a few touches of humor. The play is thought provoking as it depicts a poor black family struggling to have a place of its own. Along the way, they meet with many troubles, including the loss of the insurance money and the prejudice of the white community. Because of the family's determination, especially that of Mama, the Youngers are seen leaving their old apartment in South Chicago to move into their new home.

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Free MonkeyNotes Plot Synopsis-A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry
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