A Raisin in the Sun: Money is Only an Object Essay

1164 Words 5 Pages
Does money control today's society? The Younger family is an African American family in Chicago in the 1950s. The family lives in a small and ratty one window apartment. They are an “average” family who receives the proceeds from a $10,000 life insurance policy from the death of Walter Lee Sr. Everyone in the family has their own idea of what they want to do with the money, if it was up to one of them. The author's story setting is in the apartment surrounded by various conflicts, conversations and actions of the characters. The story line is only a couple of days, but in that time the author is able to show how poverty can have a negative effect on the Younger family.

Hansberry uses Walter Jr’s character to display one way that
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Walter does not feel like he is the man of the house so Mama and Walter sit down and discuss it. She tells him, …”I paid the man thirty-five hundred dollars down on the house. That leaves sixty-five hundred dollars. Monday morning I want you to take this money and take three thousand dollars and put it in a savings account for Beneatha’s medical schooling. The rest you put in a checking account-with your name on it. And from now on it is for you to look after. For you to decide“(42).
Walter focused solely on the money and this caused him to think that all the money is his and he can go and do as he pleases. He was obviously disappointed when Mama did not give him any of the money initially but when she entrusted him with the remaining $6,500 it brought about a sense of pride and responsibility that had long eluded him. It was almost a renewing moment for Walter as his family life changed for the better since he was now acting as the man of the house.

Hansberry lays out her thoughts in various manners through the family members. She demonstrates that having money and a desire to be in business does not mean you’re a business person. One night the family neighbor, Mrs. Johnson, comes over to chat with the family, she asks about everyone and what is going on with each family member. She continues talking about the family moving and states,“… Lord-I bet this time next month y’all’s names will have been in the papers

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