Womanism in Lorraine Vivian Hansberry's 'A Raisin in the Sun' - Beneatha and the Triple Oppression of African American Women: Beneatha and the Triple PDF (Adobe DRM) download by Antje Bernstein

Womanism in Lorraine Vivian Hansberry's 'A Raisin in the Sun' - Beneatha and the Triple Oppression of African American Women: Beneatha and the Triple

GRIN Verlag
Publication date: January 2007
ISBN: 9783638628556
Digital Book format: PDF (Adobe DRM)

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The question of discrimination has been an important issue ever since. In history there have always been human beings that were considered to be inferior to others. There are many reasons that caused people to consider other people to be less valuable and consequently made them think that these people can and have to be treated in a different, mostly unfair way due to their not belonging to the dominant majority. The most prominent forms of discrimination are due to racial, sexual, and social differences. If a person does not fit into the predominating norms he or she is often regarded as being no equal member of the society to which he or she belongs. Such people often try to assimilate into the society that oppresses them and adjust to the dominant majority as much as possible. But since there has been discrimination there have always been people who would not let anybody force them to be an outcast. They do not want to deny who and what they are and they struggle to be accepted and respected like everybody else. That is why whole movements like the Civil Rights Movement or the Women's Movement evolved in the United States of America to improve the situation of discriminated people and put an end to their subordinate roles within their society.
Black feminists or womanists are the ones that deal with the discrimination of black women in particular. The struggles of African American women for equality can not only be seen in everyday life but in literary texts as well. Although the term womanism was not coined until the 1980's, the 'concept' of black feminism had of course appeared in many literary works before that time.
An example for that is Lorraine Hansberry's award-winning play A Raisin in the Sun. The drama about an African American working class family, which comes to money, is a portrait of a typical black family, their dreams, and their struggles to realise these dreams. One of these family-members is Beneatha - a young, black woman who has to assert herself over the values of her family and the prejudices of her society. Although the play addresses several topics like the '[...] value systems of the black family; concepts of African American beauty and identity; class and generational conflicts; the relationships of husbands and wives, black men and women [and] feminism [...]' (Hansberry 1994, p.6), it will be the aim of this term paper to focus on black feminism and Beneatha's struggles within the play in particular. [...]
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