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A Raisin in the Sun

by Lorraine Hansberry

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Can you provide real-life and play examples for the theme "values and ideals are worth fighting for" in A Raisin in the Sun?

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In Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, there are multiple examples of characters fighting for values and ideals that are significant. One such example is the conflict that arises between Beneatha and her suitor, George. Beneatha wants to connect to her African heritage. George, without even seeming to realize his words' impact, tells her, "Don't be so proud of yourself, Bennie—just because you look eccentric" (act 2, scene 1). She questions, "How can something that's natural be eccentric?" and George stumbles over his reply, telling her to get dressed. This source of conflict continues into the next scene, when Beneatha tries to get George to engage in meaningful conversation with her, and he tells her that he wants "a nice—simple . . . girl . . . not a poet" (act 2, scene 2). Beneatha finally has enough, realizing that George is content to accept the status quo of the (white) world around him without question. She is not and decides to part ways, choosing her values over their relationship.

In history, an example of people who fought for their ideals are the resistance fighters during WWII in Europe. There were many people risking their lives to help Jews and other persecuted people hide and even escape to regions of safety. Some of these resistance fighters were imprisoned and even killed, but they held true to their values of recognizing the value of all human life and fought to make a difference.

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The climax of A Raisin in the Sun offers the play's best example of the theme "values and ideals are worth fighting for" when Walter invites Mr. Lindner back to the apartment.

Walter invites Lindner back with the intentions of accepting the money Lindner had offered earlier to keep the Younger family from moving in to the neighborhood where they bought the house. After being challenged by the family, Walter ultimately decides to honor his mother's point of view and turns Mr. Lindner out once again.

Putting the pride and love of the family first, despite the financial straits and disappointments he has faced, Walter is finally standing on values and fighting to achieve some honor.

A real life example of this theme in action can be found in the news of the Arab Spring, where protestors risked their lives to bring about a democratic revolution in several Middle Eastern countries. Or you could look at the American Revolution or the American Civil Rights Movement. Each of these political moments called upon men and women to stand up for their values and to fight for them.

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