Lorraine Hansberry’s novel, A Raisin in the Sun, revolves around a middle-class African-American family, struggling during World War II. By reading about the Younger’s true to life experiences, one learns many important life lessons. One of the aforementioned would be that a person should always put family’s needs before their own. There are many examples of this throughout the novel. Just a few of these would be the example of Ruth and her unborn baby, Walter regaining the respect of his family, and Mama and her unselfish ways.
The first event that shows one should always put family before
oneself is the case of Ruth and her unborn baby. At first, Ruth is thinking about having an abortion, and has already paid a five-dollar down payment to the doctor. She explains to Walter her reasoning for such drastic measures by saying, “…I—I’m sorry about this new baby, Walter. I guess maybe I better go on and do what I started… I guess I just didn’t realize how bad things was with us… I guess I just didn’t realize.”(87) Ruth is going to destroy this baby because she feels that she and Walter just do not have enough money to support another family member, and feels that she and Walter will only bring the baby into a world of fighting. Beneatha also has influence on Ruth’s decision by asking, “… where is he going to live? On the roof?”(58). Beneatha feels that if Ruth has another baby it would just complicate the living situation, which is strenuous enough as it is. Later, even with all of this negative energy, Ruth comes to realize that she should not take the life of her baby and decides to keep it. One of her reasons for this change of heart is that her and Walter have been getting along much better, and their constant fighting was one of the main reasons she did not want to have the baby in the first place. Also, now that they are all moving into a new house, there will be enough room for the baby. In the end, although having an abortion seems like an easy way out, Ruth instead thinks about the baby’s life rather than her own, and chooses not to terminate her pregnancy.
Another example that proves this, is when Walter gives away his and Beneatha's money to buy a liquor store, and loses it all. He then tries to get the money back by selling their new house to Mr. Lindner, although the only reason Mr. Lindner wants to buy it is because he and the other members of Clybourne Park do not want a black family living in their community. After the family tells him not to, Walter invites Mr. Lindner over to finalize the agreement. Walter even tells Mama what he is going to say: “All right, Mr. Lindner—that’s your neighborhood out there! You got the right to keep it like you want! You got the right to have it like you want! Just write the check and—the house is yours.”(144) So even though Walter had his whole speech for Mr. Lindner planned out, he changes his mind at the last moment. The reason for this sudden change is because of...