What does the poem "A Raisin in the Sun" mean? (2023)

Hughes questions in the poem whether a "dream deferred"—a dream postponed—withers "[l]ike a raisin in the sun." He answers that it does not, but rather that it "grows harder." Thus, the poem can be interpreted as saying that even if we fail to achieve some of our goals, we should still strive for them because eventually they will be accomplished.

Raisins are dried grapes. The phrase "like a raisin in the sun" comes from the Bible (Isaiah 7:14). It means that something despised at first, such as a seed, fruit, or idea, will grow once given time and attention. So, the poem is saying that even if you fail to achieve some of your goals now, you can still strive for them in the future when you have more time.

Furthermore, the phrase "raisin in the sun" has become a metaphor for anything left until the last minute. For example, if you're giving a speech then you should include all important points even if you think they'll be covered by others. And finally, "raisin in the sun" has also been used as an expression of hope.

Table of Contents

  1. What does the poem "A Raisin in the Sun" mean?
  2. What happens to a Dream Deferred in Raisin in the Sun?
  3. How is Langston Hughes's poem related to a raisin in the sun?
  4. Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun's meaning?
  5. Why do you think a raisin is used as a simile for dreams?
  6. What do you think a raisin in the sun will be about?
(Video) What makes a poem … a poem? - Melissa Kovacs

What happens to a Dream Deferred in Raisin in the Sun?

The title of the poem is a reference to Langston Hughes' poetry "Harlem," which asks, "What happens to a dream deferred?" The speaker suggests numerous options, one of which is that it dries out "like a raisin in the sun." This line has inspired many artists to create their own interpretations of what will happen to a dream after it has been deferrred.

In the play and film, this scene occurs right at the end. If you had dreamed your dream last night, then surely it must be alive inside you today. But if you'd waited until today to feel proud, then maybe your dream was only a silly fantasy. Either way, you'll never know unless you try. So go ahead, make your dream come true!

How is Langston Hughes's poem related to a raisin in the sun?

Langston Hughes' poem "Montage of a Dream Deferred," written as a criticism of Harlem culture, serves as the epigraph to A Raisin in the Sun. The title of the play is derived straight from a passage in Langston Hughes' poem on postponed hopes, and the epigraph presents a question that the play seeks to answer.

Hughes was a prominent American poet, essayist, and civil rights activist who spent much of his life in New York City. He published more than fifty poems between 1930 and 1967, most famously including "The Negroes' Long Walk" and "Harlem Suite." Hughes was also one of the founders of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) and served as its first national secretary-treasurer. In 1961, he received the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his rich and varied poetry, which with clear-sighted passion points out the evils of racism and stands up for the dignity of man."

In addition to being an influential poet, Langston Hughes is also noted for his contributions to the debate on race relations in the United States. His speeches and writings on black nationalism and communism helped shape these debates.

(Video) The pleasure of poetic pattern - David Silverstein

One can say without exaggeration that A Raisin in the Sun is one of the most important plays in the history of American theatre. On August 27, 1959, it had its world premiere at the New York Theatre Workshop.

Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun's meaning?

Langston Hughes utilizes a comparison in his poem "Harlem": "Does it dry out, like a raisin in the sun?" Lines 2-3 Using this comparison, he expresses how dreaming may be both wonderful and harmful. A raisin is a dried grape that has been exposed to the sun. Hughes is demonstrating that dreams may be unpleasant. However, dreams can also be beneficial in that they give us hope and keep us motivated.

Hughes then goes on to say that dreaming is better than nothing at all (line 4). He believes that dreaming is useful because it gives people something to do instead of just sitting around and thinking about the problems in their lives. Some may feel discouraged when they wake up and realize that they are still faced with these same problems even after sleeping for just a few hours. But dreaming allows them to forget about their troubles for a little while so that when they wake up, they are more likely to be able to deal with them.

Furthermore, Hughes believes that dreaming is good because it helps us escape from our current situation. If we were trapped inside our own minds, we would never have any time to think about anything else. By escaping into our dreams, we are giving ourselves a break from the world and getting some much-needed rest.

Finally, Hughes says that dreaming is good because it keeps us young. We get older every day, but because we're still living our dreams each night, we haven't reached the point where we cannot learn new things.

(Video) Parts of a Poem | Elements of Poetry | Poetry for Beginners

Why do you think a raisin is used as a simile for dreams?

A dream put on wait may "dry out like a raisin in the sun," according to the poem. A dried, rigid raisin is the sensory polar opposite of what it once was: a juicy, thirst-quenching green or red grape. Thus, its appearance in your dream indicates that your desires will remain unfulfilled unless you take action to satisfy them.

The phrase comes from a popular medieval French poem called The Romance of the Rose by Jean de Meung. The poem is actually about love, but some people think the line about dreams and visions also applies to other kinds of fantasies/hallucinations caused by drinking wine.

Wine can have a hallucinogenic effect when drunk in large quantities over a short period of time. This is why people have been known to have nightmares after partying hard or drinking too much alcohol.

Additionally, grapes produce acid when they are ripe; thus, a raisin is any dry fruit that has become soft due to exposure to air or sunlight. Dreaming about raisins means that you need to be careful not to let negative ideas or circumstances affect your decisions or actions. Otherwise, they will cause you to miss out on opportunities to find success.

What do you think a raisin in the sun will be about?

A Raisin in the Sun is mostly about dreams, as the main characters try to overcome the terrible conditions that govern their life. The title of the piece alludes to a hypothesis notably made by Langston Hughes in a poem about dreams that were lost or postponed. According to this theory, everything that grows high would one day be brought down to make way for more profitable crops.

(Video) How To Write A Poem That Rhymes-Tutorial

Raising grapes and making wine was once quite an important part of American history. Many old wineries can still be seen in Northern California. Today, though, they are mostly used for entertainment purposes (such as movie sets) or preserved as landmarks.

In the summertime, the sun's heat causes water molecules in the soil to evaporate. This leaves your grapes with no water but also no chance of disease because there is no moisture anywhere on them. Over time, this can cause the grapes to turn brown and fall off of the vine. However, if the grapes are kept in the sunlight then they will absorb some of the heat and stay green and ripe.

In order to protect their fruit, farmers often put their grapes into what is called a "bunched variety" which means that they are all grown from the same root ball, or bunch of roots. This ensures that if one grape gets damaged or infected, then the rest are still safe and mature.


1. How to Write a Poem
2. The Will to Win - A Powerful Life Poem
(RedFrost Motivation)
3. WE ARE FURY - Poem of a Killer (with Elijah Cruise)
4. Are We There Yet? | CoComelon Nursery Rhymes & Kids Songs
(Cocomelon - Nursery Rhymes)
5. Everything you need to write a poem (and how it can save a life) | Daniel Tysdal | TEDxUTSC
(TEDx Talks)
6. Charles Bukowski | THE MIND, GO ALL THE WAY ᴴᴰ | Motivational Poem


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Prof. An Powlowski

Last Updated: 14/10/2023

Views: 6353

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (44 voted)

Reviews: 83% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Prof. An Powlowski

Birthday: 1992-09-29

Address: Apt. 994 8891 Orval Hill, Brittnyburgh, AZ 41023-0398

Phone: +26417467956738

Job: District Marketing Strategist

Hobby: Embroidery, Bodybuilding, Motor sports, Amateur radio, Wood carving, Whittling, Air sports

Introduction: My name is Prof. An Powlowski, I am a charming, helpful, attractive, good, graceful, thoughtful, vast person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.