In a Raisin in the Sun, what values to the family members associate with Mama's late husband?

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lsumner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In A Raisin in the Sun, Mama's husband Mr. Younger was a proud man. He worked hard and he too had dreams of bettering himself. He and Mama dreamed of owning their own house. Mama and her husband had a life long dreaming of owning their own house; therefore, they worked hard in hopes of one day being able to buy their dream house. That is one reason Mama takes her husband's insurance money and decides to buy a house of her own to share with her family.

No doubt, Mama's husband worked hard. He taught his children to work hard. He dreamed that one day they would get ahead in life. 

Mr. Younger Sr. was supportive of his wife's Christian values. He and Mama made sure that the Walter and Beneatha attended church. Attending church ensured that the Younger family learned good values. Mr. Younger and his wife believed in teaching their children good values. 

When Beneatha was disrespecting Mama's belief in God, Mama reminded Beneatha that her parents had always taught their children right from wrong. Mama speaks seriously to Benatha: 

It don't sound nice for a young girl to say things like that - you wasn't brought up that way. Me and your father went to trouble to get you and Brother to church every Sunday.

Also, Mama reminds her son Walter Jr. that his father believed in giving life, not taking it. Mama was trying to get Walter to talk Ruth out of having an abortion. Walter's father loved his children. He would never had agreed to Ruth having an abortion. He was old fashioned and had high standards and Christian values.

When Mama learns that Ruth is thinking of having an abortion, she urges Walter to talk to his wife. Walter runs away and Mama shouts that his father would have been disgraced by his son's selfish, cowardly behavior:

She informs Walter that his wife is pregnant, and that she is in danger of having an abortion. She urges her son to speak to his wife, but instead of facing the issue, he walks out of the apartment. As he is leaving, Mrs. Younger calls him a disgrace to his father’s memory.

Mama uses the memory of her husband as a way to reach Walter Jr. She tries to talk some sense into Walter Jr. This proves that Mr. Younger Sr. would not have approved of Walter's behavior of running away from his problems. 

No doubt, Mr. Younger Sr. was a man with excellent values. 

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A Raisin in the Sun

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