UH A Raisin in the Sun Character analysis Questions solution

UH A Raisin in the Sun Character analysis Questions
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UH A Raisin in the Sun Character analysis Questions



A Raisin in the Sun








The action of the play is set in Chicago’s South side, sometime

between World War II and the present.

Act I

Scene I Friday morning.

Scene II The following morning.

Act II

Scene I Later, the same day.

Scene II Friday night, a feweeks w later.

Scene III Moving day, on week e later.


An hour later.



The YOUNGER living room would be comfortable a an well- d

ordered room if it were not for a number of indestructible contradictions to this state of being. Its furnishings typical are and un486

Lorraine Hansberry

distinguished and their primary feature now is that they have

clearly had to accommodate the living of too many people for too

many years—and they are tired. Still, we can see that at some time,

a time probably no longer remembered by the family (except perhaps for MAMA) the , furnishings of this room were actually selected

with care and love and even hope—and brought to this apartment

and arranged with taste and pride.

That was a long time ago. Now the once loved pattern of the

couch upholstery has to fight to show itself from under aces of

crocheted doilies and couch covers which have themselves finally

come to be more important than the upholstery. And here a table

or a chair has been moved to disguise the worn places in the carpet;

but the carpet has fought back by showing its weariness, with

depressing uniformity, elsewhere on surface. its

Weariness has, in fact, won in this room. Everything has been

polished, washed, sat on, used, scrubbed too often. All pretenses

but living itself have long since vanished from the very atmosphere

of this room.

Moreover, a section of this room, for it is reallynot a room unto

itself, though the landlord’s lease would make it seem so, slopes

backward to provide a small kitchen area, where family the prepares the meals that are eaten in the living room proper, which

must also serve as dining room. The single window that has been

provided for these “two” rooms is located in this kitchen area.

The sole natural light the family may enjoy in the course of a day

is only that which fights it way through this little window.

At left, a door leads to a bedroom which MAM is shared A by

and her daughter, BENEATHA A. t right, opposite, is a second room

(which in the beginning life of of the this apartment was probably

the breakfast room) which serves as a WALTE bedroom an fo R dr

his wife, RUTH.

Time Sometime between World War II and the present.

Place Chicago’s South side.

At rise It is morning dark in the living TRAVI asleep room. iSs

on the make-down bed at center. An alarm clock sounds from

within the bedroom at right, and RUT presently H enters from that

room and closes the door behind her. She crosses slepily toward



the window. As she passes her sleeping son she reaches down and

shakes him a little. At the window she raises the shade and a dusky

Southside morning light comes infeebly. fills She a pot with water

and puts it on to boil. She calls to the boy, between yawns, in a

slightly muffled voice.

RUTH is about thirty. We can see that she was a pretty girl, even

exceptionally so, but now it is apparent life has that been little

that she expected, and disappointment has already begun to hang

in her face. In a few years, before thirty-five even, she will be

known among her people as a “settled woman.”

She crosses to her son and gives him a good, final, rousing shake.

RUTH: Come on now, boy, it’s seven thirty! (Her so sits n up at

last, in a stupor of sleepiness.) I say hurr upy Travis , Yo! u ain’t

the only person in the world got to use a bathroom! (The child,

a sturdy, handsome little boy of ten or eleven, drags himself out

of the bed and almost blindly takes his towels and “today’s

clothes” from drawers and a closet and goes out to the bathroom, which is in an outside hall and which is hared by another

family or families on the same RUT floor. H crosses to th bed- e

room door at right and opens it and calls in to her husband.)

Walter Lee! . . . It’ afte s r seven thirty! Lemme see you d som o e

waking up in there now! (She waits.) Yo bette u ger fro t upm

there, man! It’ afte s r seven thirt Iy tell you. (She waits again.)

All right, yo jus u t go ahead and lay ther an e nex d t thin yo g u

know Travis be finished and Mr Johnson’l . bl e i ther n e and

you’ll be fussing and cussing round here lik ae madman An ! d

be late too! (She waits, at the end o patience.) f Walter Leit’s time for you to GET UP!

She waits another second and then starts to go into the bedroom,

but is apparently satisfied that her husband has begun to get up.

She stops, pulls the door to, and returns to the kitchen area. She

wipes her face with a moist cloth and runs her fingers through er

sleep-disheveled hair in effort a vain and ties an apron around her

housecoat. The bedroom door at right opens and her husband

stands in the doorway in his pajamas, which are rumpled and

mismated. He is a lean, intense young man in his middle thirties,

inclined to quick nervous movements and erratic speech habits—

and always in his voice there is a quality of indictment.


Lorraine Hansberry

WALTER: Is he out yet?

RUTH: What you mean out? He ain’t hardly got in there good


WALTER (wandering in, still more oriented to sleep than to a new

day): Well, what was you doing all that yelling for if I can’t

even get in there yet? (Stopping and thinking.) Check coming


RUTH: They said Saturday and this is just Friday and I hopes to

God you ain’t going to get up here first thing this morning and

start talking to me ’bout no money—’cause I ’bout doto hear it.

WALTER: Something the matter with you this morning?

RUTH: No—I’m just sleepy as the devil. What kind of eggs you


WALTER: Not scrambled (RUT. H starts to scramble eggs.) Paper

come? (RUTH points impatiently to the rolled up Tribune on the

table, and he gets it and spreads it out and vaguely reads the

front page.) Set off another bomb yesterday.

RUTH (maximum indifference): Did they?

WALTER (looking up): What’s the matter wit you h ?

RUTH: Ain’t nothing the matter with me. And don’t keep asking

me that this morning.

WALTER: Ain’t nobody bothering you. (reading the news of the

day absently again) Say Colonel McCormick is sick.

RUTH (affecting tea-party interest): Is he now? Poor thing.

WALTER (sighing and looking at his watch): Oh, me. (He waits.)

Now what is that boy doing in that bathroom all thi time s ? He

just going to have to start getting up earlier. I can’t beto work on account of him fooling around in there.

RUTH (turning on him): Oh, no he ain’t going to be getting up no

earlier no such thing! It ain’t his fault that he can’tno earlier nights ’cause he got a bunch of crazy good-for-nothing

clowns sitting up running their mouths in what is supposed to

be his bedroom after ten o’clock at night. . .

WALTER: That’s what you mad about, ain’t it? The things I want

to talk about with my friend jus s t couldn’t be important in your

mind, could they?

He rises and finds a cigarette in her handbag on the table and



crosses to the little window and looks out, smoking deeply and

enjoying this first one.

RUTH (almost matter o factly, f a complaint to automatic o to deserve emphasis): Why you alway go s t t smok o e befor yoe u eat

in the morning?

WALTER (at the window): Just look a ‘et m down there . . Runnin . g

and racing to work . . . (He turns faces an wife d hi ans watches d

her a moment at the stove, and then, suddenly) Yo loo u k young

this morning, baby.

RUTH (indifferently): Yeah?

WALTER: Jus fo t r a second—stirrin the g m eggs. Jus fotr asecond

it was—you looked real young again (H. reaches e fo her; r she

crosses away. Then, drily) It’s gon now—yo e loo u k like yourself


RUTH: Man, if you don’ shu t ut p an leav d me alone e .

WALTER (looking out to th street e again): First thin ag ma ough n t

to learn i lif n e is not to make love to n colore o d woman first

thing in the morning Yo . u al soml e eeeevil peopl ae eigh t t o’clock

in the morning.

TRAVIS appears in the hall doorway, almost fully dressed and quite

wide awake now, his towels and pajamas across his shoulders. He

opens the door and signals for his father to make the bathroom in

a hurry.)

TRAVIS (watching the bathroom): Daddy, com one !

WALTER gets his bathroom utensils flies an oudt to the bathroom.

RUTH: Sit down and have your breakfast, Travis.

TRAVIS: Mama, thi is Friday s (gleefully) , Check coming tomorrow, huh?

RUTH: You get your min of d mone f anyd ea you t r breakfast.

TRAVIS (eating): Thi iss the mornin wg suppose e t brin od thge fifty

cents to school.

RUTH: Well, I ain’t got no fifty cents this morning.

TRAVIS: Teache sa r y we hav toe .

RUTH: I don’t care what teacher say Iain’ . got t it. Ea you t r breakfast, Travis.

TRAVIS I : am eating.

RUTH: Hush up now an jus d eat t !


Lorraine Hansberry

The boy gives her an exasperated look for her lack of

understanding, and eats grudgingly.

TRAVIS: You think Grandmama would hav ite?

RUTH: No! And I want you to stop asking your grandmother for

money, you hear me?

TRAVIS (outraged): Gaaaleee I! don’ as t k her sh, jus e t gimm iet


RUTH: Travis Willard Younger—I got too much on me this morning to be—

TRAVIS: Mabe Dadd —y

RUTH: Travisl

The boy hushes abruptly. They are both quiet and tense for several


TRAVIS (presently): Could I mayb geo carry some grocerie fron ins t

of the supermarket for a little whil afte e r school then?

RUTH: Just hush, I said. (Travis jabs his spoon into hi cereal s bowl

viciously, and rests his head in anger upon his fists.) If you

through eating, you can get over there and make your bed.

The boy obeys stiffly and crosses the room, almost mechanically,

to the bed and more or less folds the bedding into a heap, then

angrily gets his books and cap.

TRAVIS (sulking and standing apart from her unnaturally): I’m


RUTH (looking up from the stove to inspect him automatically):

Come here. (He crosses to her and she studies his head.) If you

don’t take this comb and fix this here head (TRAVI , you better S !

puts down his books with a great sigh of oppression, and crosses

to the mirror. His mother mutters under her breath about his

“slubbornness.”) ‘Bout to march out of here with that head

looking just like chickens slept in it! jus I t don’t know where

you get your stubborn ways . . . And get your jacket, too. Looks

chilly out this morning.

TRAVIS (with conspicuously brushed hair and jacket): I’m gone.

RUTH: Get carfare and milk mone — (waving y one finger —and ) not

a single penny for no caps, you hear me?

TRAVIS (with sullen politeness): Yes’m.

He turns in outrage to leave. His mother watches after him as in



his frustration he approaches the door almost comically. When she

speaks to him, her voice has become very a gentle tease.

RUTH (mocking, as she thinks he would say it): Oh, Mama makes

me so mad sometimes, I don’t know what to do! (She waits andcontinues to his back as he stands stock-still in front of he door.)

I wouldn’t kiss that woman good-bye for nothing in this world

this morning! (The boy finally turns around and rolls his eyes

at her, knowing the mood has changed and he is vindicated; he

does not, however, move toward her yet.) Not for nothing in

this world! (She finally laughs aloud at him and holds out her

arms to him and we see that it is a way between them, very old

and practiced. He crosses to her and allows her to embrace

him warmly but keeps his face fixed with masculine rigidity.

She holds him back from her presently and looks at him and

runs her fingers over the features of his face. With utter gentleness—) Now—whose little old angry man ar you e ?

TRAVIS (the masculinity an gruffness d start fade o a last.): t Aw

gaalee—Mama . . .

RUTH (mimicking): Aw—gaaaaalleeeee, Mama! (She pushes him,

with rough playfulness and finality, toward the door.) Get on

out of here or you going to be late.

TRAVIS (in the face of love, new aggressiveness): Mama, coul Id

please go carry groceries?

RUTH: Honey, it’s starting to get so cold evenings.

WALTER (coming in from the bathroom and drawing a makebelieve gun from a make-believe holster and shooting at his son):

What is it he wants to do?

RUTH: Go carry grocerie afte s r school at the supermarket.

WALTER: Well, let him go …

TRAVIS (quickly, to th ally): e I have —sh to e won’t gimme the fifty

cents . . .

WALTER (to hi wife s only): Why not?

RUTH (simply, and with flavor): ‘Cause we don’t have it.

WALTER (t RUT o H only): Wha yo t u tel thl e boy things like that

for? (Reaching down into his pants with a rather important

gesture) Here so , —n

(He hands the boy the coin, but his eyes are directed to wife’s. his

TRAVIS takes the money happily.)


Excellent Quality




45-41 points

The background and significance of the problem and a clear statement of the research purpose is provided. The search history is mentioned.

Literature Support

91-84  points

The background and significance of the problem and a clear statement of the research purpose is provided. The search history is mentioned.


58-53 points

Content is well-organized with headings for each slide and bulleted lists to group related material as needed. Use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. to enhance readability and presentation content is excellent. Length requirements of 10 slides/pages or less is met.

Average Score


40-38 points

More depth/detail for the background and significance is needed, or the research detail is not clear. No search history information is provided.

83-76  points

Review of relevant theoretical literature is evident, but there is little integration of studies into concepts related to problem. Review is partially focused and organized. Supporting and opposing research are included. Summary of information presented is included. Conclusion may not contain a biblical integration.

52-49  points

Content is somewhat organized, but no structure is apparent. The use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. is occasionally detracting to the presentation content. Length requirements may not be met.

Poor Quality


37-1 points

The background and/or significance are missing. No search history information is provided.

75-1 points

Review of relevant theoretical literature is evident, but there is no integration of studies into concepts related to problem. Review is partially focused and organized. Supporting and opposing research are not included in the summary of information presented. Conclusion does not contain a biblical integration.

48-1 points

There is no clear or logical organizational structure. No logical sequence is apparent. The use of font, color, graphics, effects etc. is often detracting to the presentation content. Length requirements may not be met

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