Study Guide

A Raisin in the Sun Act Two, Scene Two

By Lorraine Hansberry

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Act Two, Scene Two

  • Beneatha and George return from another date. George wants to kiss, but Beneatha wants to discuss social issues.
  • George says there’s no point to such political mumbo-jumbo.
  • Beneatha is not impressed.
  • Lena returns with groceries and offers Beneatha useful advice.
  • Ruth enters right before Mrs. Johnson, a neighbor, pops by. She shares some recent neighborhood news of some white Americans bombing African-Americans out of their houses. She obviously overstays her welcome…but not before she mooches some coffee and snacks from the Youngers.
  • Mrs. Arnold, Walter’s employer, calls inquiring as to his absence for the past three days. This is news to Ruth and Lena. Walter proudly shares that he has been driving around while playing hooky with Willy.
  • Lena has a heart-to-heart chat with her son. She apologizes if she has ever done him wrong and reaffirms her faith in him. To put her money where her mouth is, she hands over an envelope with $6,500. She directs Walter to reserve $3,000 for Beneatha’s schooling, and the rest to be saved in a checking account under Walter’s name.
  • Shocked, Walter in turn has a heart-to-heart with his own son, sharing the vision he has in seven year’s time: a world in which the business transaction he’s about to make will have enabled a higher standard of living, one in which Travis can choose to be anything he wants to be. Yay, the American Dream!

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