A Raisin in the Sun
Thoughts from the Director
A Raisin in the Sun is a seminal American play for an unending list of reasons.
It is an accurate record of the cultural and political landscape of the African
American community in the months preceding the civil rights movement. It embodies
the hopes, wishes and dreams of a generation of black folks with southern roots
who came of age on northern urban streets. When Walter Lee Younger begs the
question, Dont my woman deserve pearls? he is the voice for an era of black
men whose intent is more than mere survival.
A Raisin in the Sun is the first time American audiences experienced an African
in a suit and tie, who was neither ignorant a savage nor cannibal but an elegant,
articulate man of considerable resource. Beneatha Youngers enchantment with the
African plants a seed in the collective Negro unconscious that later turns
coloreds into African Americans.
This play is a beloved family heirloom for me. My parents went to high school with
the playwright. My mother has told the story at least a thousand times of how she
happened upon the film crew shooting the movie version and how tall and handsome
and charming Sidney Poitier was to her that autumn day. And Ive known families
like the Youngers. As a matter of fact, I think theres some Younger blood in most
of the black folks I know. I look forward to sharing this American classic and
African American treasure with Twin Cities audiences.
Dawn Renee Jones