What Is Walter's Dream in 'A Raisin in the Sun' by Robert Nemiroff?

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Everyday millions of people around the country have dream jobs. Some might really want to get their exact dream job, buy a house or a car. Well, to get to the point, in order to fully achieve those dreams, anyone would sacrifice the things they love, but in some cases, there would be moments where the world makes it impossible for you to accomplish them. In ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ a character named Walter Lee really wants to accomplish his dream which is opening a liquor store. The downside is that in order to achieve it he’ll have to sacrifice the rest of his family’s dreams. He's in bad position, not knowing what to do or if he’ll ever get his own store and become a businessman like he is always wanted. That’s why in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff we’ll see if Walter’s can be attainted, and if it does become reality.

Walter is the type of person that is determined that he wants to be the best for his family like being the man of the house. Walter is thinking to himself about his life, and all he notices that he hasn't been accomplishing nothing the good for himself and his family as well: “This morning, I was lookin’ in the mirror and thinking about it … I’m thirty-five-years old; I been married eleven years and I got a boy who sleeps in the living room and all I got to give him is stories about how rich white people live” (Hansberry, 18). From this quote, you can tell that Walter is upset about how he isn't doing enough to do better for his family, especially his son. He is tired of telling stories, instead he wants to take action and try to be a model. Doesn't want to waste time anymore because he knows life is too short to just wait around.

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Another example of Walter wanting the best for his family is when Walter gives him fifty cents to buy anything, and gives him a hug, and lets him go head and leave to school: “In fact, here’s another fifty cents… Buy yourself some fruit today – or take a taxicab to school or something!” (Hansberry, 15). Walter tries to prevent the family's economic status from affecting his son, which Walter thinks and puts his son first before himself and gives up the idea of him taking the taxicab and giving it to his son instead. He wants his son to have everything he ought to have.

This leads him to the idea of his dream, which will give him more opportunities to his family and gain a lot of money. Walter’s dream is opening a liquor store and becoming a businessman. Walter starts to tell Ruth about his dream and how he can use Mama’s money to start the business: “Yeah. You see, this little liquor store we got in mind cost seventy-five thousand and we figured the initial investment on the place would be ‘about thirty thousand, see. That is ten thousand each. Course, there’s a couple of hundred you got to pay so’s you don’t spend your life just waiting for them clowns to let your license get approved” (Hansberry, 17). Walter believes that by investing a whole lot of money, he will earn his family their fortune. He gets a lot of crap from his family about this idea from his family, but on paper it's really not a terrible idea. Unfortunately, Walter's would-be business partner, Willy Harris, turns out to be a total crook. In the end, the Youngers remain in poverty.

Another example is when Walter’s Mama later gives him some money that is left, which helps him a lot for the liquor store: “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 in a checking account -with your name on it. And from now on any penny that come out it or that go in it is for you to look after. For you to decide” (Hansberry, 91). Lena realizes she may have contributed to Walter's state of helplessness and decides to rectify her mistake. She now believes that she might have made the wrong choice in not giving Walter any of the money. Lena decides to give all that's left of the insurance money to Walter, hoping that entrusting him will resurrect his faith in himself.

An event happened that made Walter upset and realize that you can’t really trust anyone; this caused his dream to be harder to accomplish. A friend of his that was helping with Walter’s dream notified him about Willy Harris and told him what actually happened and why didn’t things go as they were actually planned originally: “I’m sorry, Walter… I had my life staked on this deal, too…” (Hansberry, 113). Walter and Bobo both changed the course of their families' future by trusting Willy with their money Walter believed that the liquor store investment was a good idea, and he was convinced that his use for the money will have a positive effect on the family, although it's all gone now. This was a bad decision on both of their parts, and both of their families will suffer as a result.

Walter tells Linder to come over and see if they could have the money for the house. His family doesn't agree, but later Walter changes his mind by seeing his son Travis realizes that what’s he is doing is wrong: “And we have decided to move into our house because my father – my father – he earned it for us brick by brick .. We don’t want to make no trouble for anybody or fight no causes, and we will try to be good neighbors. And that’s all we got to say about that… We don’t want your money” (Hansberry, 132). Walter tells Lindner that the Youngers are going to move into the house. Their move is not motivated by issues of race, but of a family's right to create a home. By choosing not to give into Lindner, Walter regains his dignity.

That’s why in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff we see if Walter can be attanited and if it does become reality. Of course, we see that eventually Walter doesn’t achieve his dream and loses all the money his mother gave him. He learns a valuable lesson which is the importance of family and race. He goes and lives at the new house, but from here we know that it won’t be possible for him to open a liquor store in the future. In all everyone is happy where they’re going, and Travis has the most chance to have a better life and opportunity to achieve his own dreams later on.

Work Cited

  1. Hansberry, Lorraine. A Raisin in the Sun: A Drama in Three Acts. New York: Random House, 1959.
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What Is Walter’s Dream in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff? (2023, September 08). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 16, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/what-is-walters-dream-in-a-raisin-in-the-sun-by-robert-nemiroff/
“What Is Walter’s Dream in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff?” Edubirdie, 08 Sept. 2023, edubirdie.com/examples/what-is-walters-dream-in-a-raisin-in-the-sun-by-robert-nemiroff/
What Is Walter’s Dream in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff? [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/what-is-walters-dream-in-a-raisin-in-the-sun-by-robert-nemiroff/> [Accessed 16 Jun. 2024].
What Is Walter’s Dream in ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Robert Nemiroff? [Internet] Edubirdie. 2023 Sept 08 [cited 2024 Jun 16]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/what-is-walters-dream-in-a-raisin-in-the-sun-by-robert-nemiroff/
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