Dreams in Lorraine Hansberry’s Play A Raisin in the Sun

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This article studies the dreams of the main characters in the play A Raisin in the Sun and their significance as the representation of black Americans’ struggles during the Civil Rights Movement era in the United States. This study qualitatively analyzes the play scripts and explores the time and historical settings of the play applying structural dynamic literary criticism as its framework. The article also discusses the dreams of all of the characters (i.e., Walter Lee’s dream to have a liquor store, Beneatha’s dream of being a doctor and having a future husband, and Ruth and Mama’s dream to have a house with a nice garden) in their significance of showing the characters’ pride to achieve recognition and of fulfilling their unalienable rights. The former drives them to struggle for their self-respect to build their self-confidence as black Americans living in the Civil Rights Movement era. The latter proves the ownership of their self-recognition and unalienable rights in America as stated in the Declaration of Independence. Through their dreams, black Americans signify their sense of the “American Dream,” especially the dream of success and happiness as something that white Americans have owned in the country.