A Raisin in the Sun
by Lorraine Hansberry
A Raisin in the Sun Family Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Act.Scene.Line). Every time a character talks counts as one line, even if what they say turns into a long monologue.
No – there’s something come down between me and them that don’t let us understand each other and I don’t know what it is. One done almost lost his mind thinking ‘bout money all the time and the other done commence to talk about things I can’t seem to understand in no form or fashion. What is it that’s changing, Ruth? (1.1.292)
Lena feels her children breaking away from her and feels helpless to do anything about it. Her concern over the divide growing between her and her children is one of the things that makes her character truly universal. So many mothers have felt the same thing for so many years.
I’m a grown man, Mama.
Ain’t nobody said you wasn’t grown. But you still in my house and my presence. And as long as you are – you’ll talk to your wife civil. Now sit down. (1.2.201-2)
As matriarch of the Younger family, Lena maintains control over the household. Later on in the play she comes to think that her dominating nature might be part of what's driving Walter crazy. He's never been allowed to truly take responsibility.
If you a son of mine, tell her! (WALTER picks up his keys and his coat and walks out. She continues, bitterly) You…you are a disgrace to your father’s memory. Somebody get me my hat! (1.2.240)
Lena expects her son to demonstrate some of the character that her husband had. Her husband valued his children above all else. When Walter doesn't express any desire for Ruth to not have an abortion, Mama is incredibly disappointed in him. To Lena, this is a real betrayal of his father's memory.