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“Raisin in the Sun” and “Harlem” Essay


Each person should have a dream and try to achieve it any possible means, because a life without a dream may seem dull simple and even useless. American literature is probably one of the most frequent sources that depict the concept of having a dream, the existence of a deferred dream, and the necessity not to lose it. Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun and Langston Hughes’ “Harlem” are the two stories about what can happen to a human dream that is so perfectly compared to the image a raisin dried up in the sun.

It may happen that Hansberry finds the line of Hughes’ “Harlem” appropriate for her play because of the necessity to complete a thought about human demands and possibilities and explain that even a deferred dream can make a life full of sense and enthusiasm that inspires people of different age with different interests and ambitions like the Youngers from A Raisin in the Sun.

Hansberry and Hughes introduce the same idea of a dream compared to a raisin dried up in the sun, but explain it in different ways in order to show how the interpretation of a thought may influence the role of a dream. There are many readers and experts, who believe that Hansberry’s decision to use the whole line of the poem as a title of a play is based on the connection between the races of the author and the characters of the play and their intentions to use their potential and achieve the goals set.

Still, each person may have a unique vision and attitude to the same issues and prove its rights on the existence. I think that Hansberry finds the line “like a raisin in the sun?” (Hughes 3) the most appropriate for her play because of two reasons: to complete a though about human possibilities and demands and to prove that the image of a raisin in a black community may have a number of interpretations that worth of recognition.

In the poem, Hughes puts a number of questions to one simple idea about what can happen to a dream deferred and fails to provide the reader with a clear answer but offers more questions for consideration. Hansberry may find the chosen approach and questions too interesting but too abandoned by their author and want to complete the thought. It is not enough to give an answer, it is more important to explain how the dream deferred appears and influences a human life, and then encourages and guides a person – “seem like God didn’t see fit to give the black man nothing but dreams – but He did give us children to make them dreams seem worth while” (Hansberry Scene 1 Act 1).

Hansberry proves that even if the dream is deferred or dried up in the sun, it should never be left as it has been already identified. People may face some challenges and misunderstandings but never lose a hope to achieve the goals sets and consider personal abilities.

Finally, the lines of the poem and the characters of the play seem to have much in common because Hansberry tries to create her characters regarding each line of the Hughes’ work. For example, “a dream deferred” (Hughes 1) represents the Youngers as a whole; and the dream that can “fester like a sore” (Hughes 4) addresses George Murchison.

For Beneatha, the dream deferred may “stink like rotten meat” (Hughes 6) because of her inability to drop something on a half road and believe in the concepts that are neither appropriate nor acceptable. In fact, the play is a kind of depiction of the poem that has not been finished by its author and offered to the reader to be understood and interpreted.

Black people should not be deprived of an opportunity to dream and try to improve their lives, and this is the main message sent by Hughes and Hansberry in their works to their readers in order to demonstrate how dreams and their wrong explanations may change the lives and influence the relations between the closest people.

In general, the connection between Hughes’ “Harlem” and Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun is evident and cannot be neglected. The two authors show how it is possible to treat a dream and allow the dream to guide a human life. On the one hand, it may seem that people create more problems for themselves dreaming about something being at odds with their abilities. On the other hand, the more complicated a dream is, the more interesting a life can be.

This is why it is an individual choice of each person how to understand the importance of having a dream and use it as a raisin that can be easily dried up in the sun or just explores under the circumstances or a powerful stone that can show the right way and prove the worthiness of each moment of a life.

This Essay on “Raisin in the Sun” and “Harlem” was written and submitted by user Madelyn Rios to help you with your own studies. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.

Madelyn Rios studied at Yeshiva University, USA, with average GPA 3.08 out of 4.0.

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Rios, M. (2020, March 24). "Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem" [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/raisin-in-the-sun-and-harlem/

Work Cited

Rios, Madelyn. "Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem." IvyPanda, 24 Mar. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/raisin-in-the-sun-and-harlem/.

1. Madelyn Rios. "Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem." IvyPanda (blog), March 24, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raisin-in-the-sun-and-harlem/.


Bibliography


Rios, Madelyn. "Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem." IvyPanda (blog), March 24, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raisin-in-the-sun-and-harlem/.

References

Rios, Madelyn. 2020. "Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem." IvyPanda (blog), March 24, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/raisin-in-the-sun-and-harlem/.

References

Rios, M. (2020) '"Raisin in the Sun" and "Harlem"'. IvyPanda, 24 March.

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