"What happens to a dream deferred?" is the question that the poem by Langston Hughes asks. In this essay I will try to answer that question to which the action of the play suggests. I will also attempt to define the dreams of all the characters.
Walter, the main character, has dreams of owning a liquor store. At the beginning of the play, Walter is not even financially stable enough to own or rent a house of his own. Another dream of Walter's is to be able to financially support his family. He is frustrated with his life throughout most of the play because of his financial situation. Although he gets frustrated he still looks for opportunities to make his dreams come true.
Mama, the head of the household, wants her family to get along and be happy when they are around each other. That is her dream. She does not care so much about money; all she wants is for her family to get along. She tries really hard to hold the family together, and instill both religious and family values.
Beneatha has dreams to become a doctor. At this period in time, it is unlikely that an African American female will become a doctor. Although she knows of the challenges ahead that face her, she is determined to become a doctor. Ruth's dreams are to have a better house for her family to grow in and for Walter to finally be happy with his life.
Joseph Asagai hopes to marry Beneatha. His dreams are that he and the future will patch up all of Africa, and cure the Great Score of colonialism with Independence. Mr. Karl Lindner's dream is to sell a house in the Clybourne Park Improvement Association to the Younger family. Bobo's dream is to own a liquor store with Walter.
The answer to the poem is the dream sags like a heavy load. It sags like a heavy load because you can spend a lot of time chasing a dream until it wears you down like a heavy load would. There is a line in the poem that says, "Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?"(Referring to a dream deferred), this line relates to the play because, Walter's dream of owning a liquor store is kind of like a raisin in the sun, dried up.