A Raisin in the Sun

Viewing the World from Different Angles: Generation Gaps in Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun

The African-American experience of growing up in America changed dramatically throughout the course of the twentieth century, thus leading to differing views between the older and younger generations. In Lorraine Hansberry's play, A Raisin in the Sun, the character of Mama was raised during a point in time when racial prejudice was prevalent and blacks had virtually no opportunity to live out their dreams. On the other hand, her children, Walter and Beneatha, and her daughter-in-law, Ruth, grow up in a world where slavery exists only in history books, and although they still face financial hardship and racial discrimination, it is possible for blacks to become successful business men or even doctors. The younger generation's concept of the American dream reflects the changing times and the new opportunities that are now available for African-Americans. As a result of this generation gap, Mama and her children view the issues of religion, career choice, and abortion from extremely different angles, leading to much tension and anger in their relationship.

By viewing the dreams of Mama in comparison to the dreams of her children, one can clearly see the generation gap that exists between them. As a result of the changing...

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