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Resources to Consider

From the Kanopy Database
Lorriane Hansberry: The Life and Work of a Treasured American Playwright

"To Be Young, Gifted, and Black"
Film based on Hansberry's memoir

Clip from "American Masters" Documentary
Hansberry's inspiration for A Raison in the Sun

Writing Prompt

Take Home Essay Number Three

A Raisin in the Sun


We have read the text of Lorriane Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, and viewed both the Sidney Poitier and P. Diddy lead role versions of films made from the original play script. Select one of the below writing prompts from which to develop your research paper. Be sure to indicate the option to which you are responding in your MLA header.


Your essay should have a thesis that addresses ALL parts of the writing prompt. Body paragraphs should argue to the three textual reference points, the script of the play, the interpretations of the film(s by actors and director, and the critical analysis made by the reviewer(s). This means you need to use more than one quote per paragraph as evidence to your argument from the three perspectives.


Summary is not argument to the question. Please be sure to re-read the question as you write your sentences, to keep your reader connected to the question and your thesis are all times, and to follow our course instruction and guidelines on body paragraph development.


The use of multiple sources means you will need to keep a narrow focus on a single issue from the play, as discussed in class. Avoid making the mistake of attempting to address too many facets of the argument you present, as this could easily cause a writer to become unfocused, and create an essay that runs too long.


Your essay should be five to seven pages, and submitted in MLA format, as always. You need to demonstrate the ability to control format to guidelines to be fully successful. Your writing handbook has the details of MLA format, and includes sample essays that give visual examples of a correctly formatted essay. Essays that are not in correct MLA format will returned as incomplete, and possibly downgraded as late on completion.

1. What is the primary argument represented by the play A Raisin in the Sun? How is this argument altered from the original text in the assigned film interpretation you chose to analyze? How do reviewers' and critics' views of the plays' performances coincide with or differ from your chosen film's primary argument, and do critics' ideas fit with your analysis. Why, or why not?

2. One could argue that A Raisin in the Sun heightens our awareness of conflict between forces of good and evil in the play's characters. How are embodiments, or characterizations, of good and evil represented in the script versus the film. What arguments are served by the film interpretations of these forces? How do reviewer reactions to the play's performances connect with ideas of good and evil or argue for or against the films' interpretations?

3. How do interpretations of racism in A Raisin in the Sun differ from the text of the script and the realization of the films? How do reviewers arguments about the films' interpretations of racism?


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