The Dawn of American Literature
Let’s talk about American literature today. It is one of my favorite subjects. American literature has several aspects. Form complicated but valid points of view. Several races are described, but not just one of them can be studied. There are whites, Irish, British and Jews. All of them are born and bought in different ways. They are rarely connected. Among them, African-Americans stand out a bit. Those black Americans are not the only slaves. They all emigrated from Jamaica, the Caribbean, either North Africa or America. They all came from the same complex. It was named as the ‘DARK CONTINENT’. Some migrants were Senegalese and Ethiopians. Talking about race is not that simple, if you know what I mean. There is always a big question mark about skin color. You can’t hide or you can’t change it. Violence is everywhere. It is a predator. It comes in the form of racism, sexual abuse between races with gender inequality. A multiple combination of horror is what I can call it. This is why reading American literature became so fascinating and mysterious to read.
The rebuilding of the South allowed black Americans to abandon the plantations of the South. It was a painful time as states like Georgia, North and South Carolina, Alabama, etc. they faced the worst. The worst affected areas were in Kentucky and Virginia. These places suffered from a bad history of slavery. Inhumane treatment and human trafficking were the main forces exerted on human beings. In the 1920s, 10 million African Americans lived in the city. About 2 million lived in New York City’s Harlem. In those days, the south side of Chicago was extremely poor and unsanitary with slums. Horrible areas witnessed the poverty of men and their miserable situation. These things are vividly described in the books as “A RAISIN IN THE SUN.” A man like Walter-lee is desperate to make money the easy way and so he tries to imagine his lifestyle by placing a quilt of imaginary domination over his family. He teases and insults his wife in the first act saying that things are not done without paying the person a little money. It refers to the bribery thing. He believes that everything works with bribes despite the fact that his wife refuses to believe and so does his family. The system itself is dark. He throws all his frustration at his younger wife Ruth by telling her that she doesn’t support him for asking her mother about investing in liquor for the money her mother had inherited.
The situation depicted is very insidious as you are clearly trying to cope with it. He literally starts training her with graphic demonstrations making her understand that things don’t work out unless she pays for some snippet. The towering figure in the play is Lena Younger, his mother, who makes all the decisions, but eventually hands the house over to Walter only to witness the destruction. You may also discover gender inequality, as her husband, through his frustration, easily blames Ruth. It was easy enough for him, since he thought that women couldn’t help a man succeed. At first, it was all like an explosion, as he was using his wife as a scapegoat to make things easier for him.
At this point, what we see is that women of color were unimportant in their own home. Ruth is the perfect portrait. Women of color weren’t seen as dream-lifters no matter how hard they tried. Ruth was absolutely right about the money, but Walter’s male pressure crushed her. I was tired, helpless, and didn’t know what to do. She was running out of diplomacy for her husband, but she had a reason for it.
We still have Beneatha Younger, the carefree young woman who has revolutionary ideas unlike her family. Travis, her 11-year-old son who was curious about everything and the younger Lena, the loving and domineering mother who witnesses the disintegration of her family but saves them in the end. We will see them in the next part. Until then, explore more American literary history and explore the shadows of the dark past.