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Dreams Deferred In Hansberry's A Raising In The Sun

2644 words - 11 pages

Dreams Deferred
Everything has a price; not just material items that one purchases with currency, but also intangibles that do not appear costly. For example, how much does it cost to get an A in school? It may not require money, but it undoubtedly requires hard work and dedication. This example is synonymous with achieving one’s dreams, no matter what those dreams are. Often in school, ambitious students must sacrifice another facet of their lives in order to achieve their academic goals. In A Raisin in the Sun, many of the characters must give up something important to them to achieve their own idea of success.
Everybody has his or her own dreams. Although some people may have homogeneous aspirations, no two are exactly the same. Hansberry's play, A Raisin in the Sun, reflects this concept by expressing that each character’s idea of the American Dream is distinct in its own way. In spite of the fact that each character's goal is different, they all have one thing in common; each goal requires a sacrifice. The way in which Hansberry uses language, characterization, and setting clearly details the overwhelming truth that the fulfillment of dreams comes at a price.
The foremost component of Hansberry’s publication that communicates her theme is language. The characters each have their own unique dialect, just as they have their own unique desires. There is also a clear disparity in the dialect between members of each race. The play emphasizes this disparity by having most of the Youngers use faulty grammar and often just broken English. The main exception to this from the Younger family is Beneatha, and that also relates to her dream. While the other characters hope for more financial and family goals, Beneatha’s goal is a career goal. The process she plans to undergo will involve schooling and education, surrounding herself with educated peers. This is why she speaks more like an intellectual. For example, she says, “There is simply no blasted God-there is only man and it is he who makes miracles!” Another reason Beneatha's speech is different from the rest of her family's speech is that her friend Asagai's eloquence has influenced her. The more time Beneatha spends around school and Asagai, the more eloquent she becomes.
It is notable that all of the characters who speak incorrectly are African American. In the story, this is used as a contrasting element to show the disparity between the African American and Caucasian communities. The other anomaly to this presumed perception is Asagai. He is African American, just like the rest of the Younger family, but he shows his increased education in the way he speaks. The following quote shows Asagai’s diction, as well as his supportive relationship with Beneatha. "Then isn’t there something wrong in a house—in a world—where all dreams, good or bad, must depend on the death of a man?” He wants her to be the best person that she can because he truly cares about her. The...

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