No matter how hard they try, there are some people who cannot get ahead in life. Walter Lee Younger is a man who is frustrated with his current position in life, and every disappointment he has encountered thus far. Although he tries to be a loving man, sometimes he does not know how to show the idea of love, “Sometimes… sometimes…
I don’t even know how to try” (Hansberry 89).
His position in life can be regarded as symbolic of every black male struggling to provide for his family by any means necessary. Although Walter has a job, it seems inadequate for his survival. As a result, he has become frustrated and lacks good judgement. Throughout this play Walter searches for the key ingredient that will make his life blissful. His frustrations stem from him not being able to act as a man and provide for his family and grasp hold of his ideals to watch them manifest into a positive situation.
Walter Lee Younger, a man who is vehement for his family, has many ambitions in life, and dreams of the biggest dreams out of anyone else in the play. Walter wants the best for his family and he thinks the liquor store will provide him the financial security needed to boost them out of poverty. ‘I’m thirty five years old; I’ve been married eleven years and I got a boy who sleeps in living room (Hansberry 34).
A Raisin in the Sun is a drama is written by Lorraine Hansberry. The title is from a poem named "A Dream Deferred" by Langston Hughes. When it asks what happens to a dream that is deferred. The story is about a story of a low class black family's struggle. The family lives in a small apartment, which is too small for it's five tenants. The focus of the story is on how to spend the ten ...
best describes the sympathy and compassion Walter feels for his son. Although his family’s financial position has a strain on it, Walter doesn’t want his son to see him struggle. Even in today’s world, children are very susceptible.
Walter displays a selfless characteristic which becomes overshadowed by unwise decisions later in the play. In one particular scene, his son Travis asked both parents for money. Walter acts out of pride by giving Travis his last pocket change. This symbolizes Walter’s willingness to be a moral father. In a different situation, Walter would not display his selfish intentions. This behavior can be attributed to working in a degrading, underpaid position and not seeing results.
Metaphorically speaking, Walter can be related to the furniture in the small apartment, “tired and broken in spirit.” Every black male’s plight in America can be regarded as a provider for his family. However, society does not afford black males the benefit of feeling secure about providing for their families. It can be easy for anyone to criticize society and place the blame on America for not affording Walter the opportunities of his white counterparts. Walter does not have control over his own responsibilities. Therefore, if he was given all the resources needed to provide his family his poor judgement and lack of business sense would create further stress on the family. Ruth, Mama, and his sister Beane tha attack him from every angle about his doubtful ideals.
Ironically, those ideals are what Walter needs to shape and justify his manhood. Without ideals and proper resources to obtain them, a man’s existence can be regarded as insignificant. There are many obstacles in the way of Walter’s dream of opening a liquor store, as he tries to explain to his wife, Ruth, about what he has to do, “Baby, don’t nothing happen for you in this world ‘less you pay somebody off!” (Hansberry 33) Walter’s determination to open the liquor store can be viewed as means to an end to his family’s hardships. As Walter’s dreams become bigger and bigger, he seems to neglect the ‘smaller’ things such as his family.
‘Here I am a giant surrounded by ants! Ants who can’t even understand what the giant is talking about,” (Hansberry 85).
A dream deferred is a dream put off to another time, much like this essay. But unlike dreams sometimes, this essay will get fulfilled and done with. Each character from A Raisin in the Sun had a deferred dream, even little Travis although his dream was not directly stated. Their dreams become dried up like a raisin in the sun. Not just dreams are dried up though; Walter Lee and Ruth's marriage ...
Walter has big ideals, but his methods of achieving his goals and ideals are somewhat irrational. Walter can be regarded as more concerned with becoming self-employed without really thinking about the consequences, which may be imposed on his family. Later in play, Walter learns that he needs to set his dreams aside for the sake of the family. Also, he learns that pride in himself and his family can be regarded as inseparable and that anything that harms one harms the other. Even though Willy Harris stole the insurance money, Walter tries to make good of it by taking the money offered from Mr.
Linder, by not moving into the house in Clybourne Park. Walter certainly should be applauded for trying to rise above his current condition. Most individuals would have succumbed to poverty and tried unhealthy alternatives for achieving success. Walter’s ideal of achieving success through a liquor store should not be thought of as exploiting the hardship of blacks, but as the only opportunity adequate to providing.
In the midst of us pursuing our ambitions there exist the possibility to behave selfishly. Walter must learn that the quest for manhood can be regarded as long and tedious. So, sacrifices must be made and responsibilities must prioritized. Sometimes, people are unwilling to put their dreams aside for a bigger cause. The test of a real man ca relinquishing control of his personal ambitions to benefit the whole or in Walter’s case the family. Certainly it would be unfair for Walter give up his aspirations.
The issue is whether Walter can distinguish between a fantasy of reality and a dream deferred. Essentially this play can be regarded as the mid-life crisis of Walter Lee Younger, passionate for his family, ambitious, and bursting with energy and dreams. Walter cares about his family, and he hopes that buying the liquor store will being a brighter future to Travis, “And-and I’ll say, all right son-it’s your seventeenth birthday, what is it you ” ve decided? … Just tell me where you want to go to school and you ” ll go. Just tell me, what it is you want to be – and you ” ll be it.” (Hansberry 109).
Walter Lee, shackled by poverty and prejudice, and obsessed with his own sense of success, which he felt, would be the end of all of his social and economic problems. The dreams he had gave him a great sense of pride and self-satisfaction. Unfortunately Walter had to learn a hard lesson in life; pride and greed will eventually lead to unhappiness. Work Cited: Hansberry, Lorraine.
By: Erica Rivero A Raisin in the sun topic: What is Walter Lee Youngs reaction to the association and how does it transform him Many black men have to deal with an organized racism that affects their role in society. Walter Lee Younger has the unfortunate situation that he is constantly posed on the edge of greatness, but steadily affixed to the certainty of being the Achilles' heel of society. I ...
A Raisin in the Sun. 1958. New York: Vintage Books.