Walter Lee could be the character that is spilled the most ink on, not only he is the only main male character in the novel, but also there are many values and struggles be put on him, he made mistakes because of his fault, he also does the right things follows his heart.
Summary of Walter Lee
He is the son of Walter Senior, also the only man in the younger family(Travis be count as a boy). At the beginning of the novel, the author introduces a sense that Walter Lee gives all his money to his son Travis, and that establishes the fundamental tone of the character, he is a person that actually cares about the family, in the novel, there is bad or good, it is a novel that describes a part of the society.
However, the characteristics that let him stand out from others is his willingness to show his manhood. Walter Lee is totally not satisfied with his current job– as a driver to rich people, mainly white. He thinks being a man means to have his own business. Walter Lee always blames the family because he thinks the family does not care about his dream. The most significant scene could be the moment that while Walter Lee talking about his dreams and ambitions, Ruth just directly say: “Your eggs are getting cold” Here, Ruth not only wants to remind Walter Lee with the fact that the food is cold and get eat then but also drag Walter Lee down with something realistic. Here, the egg could also somehow a metaphor for Walter Lee’s ambition. Here introduces the idea that Walter Lee actually does not explain how he would do to achieve his dream; the only thing he is doing is actually just express his indignation that no one could understand him.
But the point is, why people around him should “understand” him anyway, he does no show anything that could make sure, or at least show some indications for his future success.
At this point, his family really could not blame him since there is hardly any chance and hope to let him really begin doing his business. But the change comes, the bill, the money that Walter senior have left be the thing that beyond the meaning of a number, but a possible key for everyone’s person dream, for Walter Lee, it is the chance for him to get into the business field, to be the real success male, to live like rich white people, to be the one that have a driver on the car, to be the one that could let his son pick the university “whatever you what to go”, have to admit that the dream Walter Lee has is kind of lovely, but he is too overconfident, his eyes become blind after these imaginations in the head.
After hearing the news that his mom uses the money to buy a house, he just soonly depressed. From the view as a whole family, surly buying a big house with “a lot of sunlight,” a place that Ruth willing to work many different jobs a day to get is a good thing. However, mom still keeps nearly a half more of the money, and decide half of it to Walter Lee’s Liquor Store(In addition, the reason it could be called as a “good idea” is people like drink, which is obviously a weak point), and half of it to support Benetha’s doctor dream.
Then, Walter Lee begins to make his first mistake; he does not just use his part of the money to invest in the liquor store, but also Benetha’s part, no need to say the money could buy one more big house with a little remain, it is big money. He does not think about it and not talk about this after he was doing it; he just gives the money to another guy.
Now, Walter Lee makes his second mistake that he does not even think about it, he does not do any ensure job on that, he just let another guy takes his money go–his money, his dream, the dead body of his bloodied father, the dream of Bethetha also the family, he is too careless. Not only that, Walter Lee looks really not good at doing business stuff; he never learned about it, never talks about how will the liquor store works, and never introduce the two guys to the family; he really knows nothing about all the things. Surely, his a careless and somewhat stupid man from what has he done.
Later parts are not that dramatic, he in depresses, and say no to Landner saying he is would not give in to these Oppressions.
Advanced Discussion of Walter Lee
A dream is one kind of motivation, and surely it is powerful since it could be the thing one person dying to get or something else important. But dream so-called dream but not a plan or purpose, a dream is something that might not be achieved in the entire life at all. Here leads out a very interesting topic use the example of Walter Lee: Will Walter Lee feels better if the check does not come at all?
We know that the check is a surprise, before Walter Senior’s death, no one knows there would be such big money comes. And they live, well, kind of normal, at least living. After the check arrives, the family get big, nice, dream-achieve level house; And the original apartment could be sold for extra money, but they also need to pay a lot more for the house compare to the previous one, will endure offensive eyesight by living in the white neighborhood. For Walter Lee himself, not only he needs to endure the pressure the family will put on him because he ruins that half or more money, but more importantly, what called hope, what called a dream, what called the self-belief just gone–like a raisin in the Sun. He would have no so-called “male power” in front of his family. He can always chatter about how the family stops him from being a success, but know the fact prove he cannot do it. His dream, at this point, is dead.