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Raisin in the Sun Conflicts

Essay by   •  January 19, 2012  •  Essay  •  405 Words (2 Pages)  •  17,629 Views

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Walter Lee Younger faces both internal and external conflicts in the play, "A Raisin in the Sun." Internally, he struggles with his need to be the man of his family; providing luxuries for his wife, and making the dreams of his son, Travis, a reality. Externally, he faces conflict with Mama due to their differing ideas of what to do with the insurance money.

Walter's internal conflicts are due to his desire to be the man of his family and his constant contributions to his family's problems. He wants to be able to provide luxuries to his wife (such as pearls) and to provide Travis "the world". Walter desires to open a liquor store, believing that that is the only way he can do these things for his family. After Walter loses the money that Mama gave him, he is filled with self-hatred, considering selling out his family and his race to Mr. Linder. At the end, the internal conflict is resolved when Walter refuses to accept Linder's offer, and accepts that keeping their pride is more important than having money.

Walter's external conflicts are mostly due to his desire to open a liquor store. Mama opposes this on religious grounds and Ruth objects on the ethics of using graft to get a liquor license. Both Ruth and Mama wish to use the insurance money to buy a house, and Beneatha wants the money to help pay for her education. When Mama uses the money to put a down payment on a house but gives Walter the remaining money to use for himself and Beneatha, that conflict seems to be resolved--Mama and Ruth get the house, Walter gets his money to do what he wants, and Beneatha gets money to pay for college. However, a new conflict arises when Walter loses the money and calls Mr. Linder the sell the house. When he meets with Mr. Linder, he is facing racism; and he almost gives in. The conflict is resolved when Walter refuses to sell the house. His family is happy that he made the right decision, and he didn't give in to racism.

Both the external and internal conflicts in "A Raisin in the Sun" were caused by the arrival of $10,000 of insurance money after Mr. Younger's death. The conflicts are finally resolved when the family moves to a new house.

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