A Raisin in the Sun Questions and Answers
by Lorraine Hansberry

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How would you describe the relationships between the characters of Walter, Ruth, Travis, Beneatha, and Mama within their family structure?

The relationships between the characters are tense, although ultimately it is clear that they love one another. Walter and Ruth’s relationship is marred by their poverty and Walter’s disappointments, which also overshadows his relationships with Mama and Beneathea. Ruth sides with Mama, recognizing the benefits a house would yield. Beneatha’s desire to use the money herself and her disdain for their assimilation creates further tension. Travis is young and often in his own world.

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As in most families, the relationships between the characters of Walter, Ruth, Travis, Beneatha, and Mama are complicated. They are often tense and difficult even though by the end, it is clear that the characters love one another. Walter and Ruth’s relationship is marred by their poverty, as well as by Walter’s general disappointment with his life and his bitterness that he has not attained any of the goals that he strives to reach. His passion to be independent and open a liquor store with Bobo overshadows his relationships with his loved ones, including his wife, mother and sister.

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