Forsaken People Character Analysis

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Forsaken People: A Raisin in the Sun and Lorraine Hansberry
Lorraine Hansberry, a female playwright and black activist, spent almost all of her life dealing with American racism, poverty, and lack of social mobility. As a person who witnessed the daily struggles of African Americans, Hansberry wanted to expose the hypocrisy in the idea that America was the land of equal opportunity. As a result, in 1959, Hansberry wrote the play, A Raisin in the Sun, which details the Youngers, an African American family, who experienced racism, poverty, and the lack of social mobility during the 1950s in Chicago’s Southside. Throughout the play, the Younger family members try to make their respective dreams come true and try to deal with the problems that
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Beneatha’s dream to become a doctor can only be achieved through the Younger family spending “a few thousand [dollars]” and through “some sacrifices” made by all of the family members (Hansberry 37). Beneatha’s ambition to become a doctor showcases the want for one family member to gain a respected position in society. Through this respected position, Beneatha will be able to have access to more economic and social resources. However, Beneatha’s ambition requires the other Younger family members to contribute time or money for her goal. Hansberry uses Beneatha’s dream to convey that America is not a land of equal opportunity, because Beneatha’s family is unnecessarily burdened in trying to better one of their family members. Hansberry explicitly reveals that African Americans who are very ambitious are not being rewarded or empowered by American society. The lack of empowerment and help from external resources contributes to African Americans struggle to have a better life. Thus, Hansberry uses Beneatha not only to expose the African American inequities, but to gain the sympathy of American society. Through sympathy, American society may be willing to help ambitious, disadvantage African …show more content…
Through the Younger family members, Hansberry argues that the idea of America as the land of opportunity is a false premise for a person to have. However, Hansberry and other Black Americans fought to make America the land of opportunity by pointing out the injustices that Black Americans faced in the 1950s. While people who read A Raisin in the Sun may conclude that America is not the land of equal opportunity, Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun might be the precursor to America’s road to redeeming its reputation as the land of opportunity if African Americans will have equal freedoms to White

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