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Lorraine Hansberry

Playwright Presentation

Charles Cox

on 21 April 2010

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Transcript of Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry Plays
"Raisin In the Sun"
"The Drinking Gourd"
"On Summer"
"The Movement"
"The Sign in Sidney Brustein's Window"
"To Be Young, Gifted and Black"
"Les Blancs" Interesting Facts

-She was the first black woman to have a play produced on Broadway
-The famous singer Nina Simone wrote a civil rights song called “To Be Young, Gifted and Black,” based on Hansberry’s unfinished play of the same title.
-Hansberry was commissioned in 1959 to write something for the National Broadcasting Company. She submitted her play The Drinking Gourd, but it was considered too controversial to be aired on television.

Work Cited
Tripp, Janet. The Importance of Lorraine Hansberry. San Diego, CA: Lucent, 1998. Print.

Scheader, Catherine. Lorraine Hansberry: Playwright and Voice of Justice. Springfield, NJ: Enslow, 1998. Print.

"Lorraine Hansberry: Biography from Answers.com." Answers.com: Wiki Q&A Combined with Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus, and Encyclopedias. Web. 15 Apr. 2010. <http://www.answers.com/topic/lorraine-hansberry>.

"Lorraine Hansberry Facts, Information, Pictures | Encyclopedia.com Articles about Lorraine Hansberry." Encyclopedia - Online Dictionary | Encyclopedia.com: Get Facts, Articles, Pictures, Video. Web. 15 Apr. 2010. <http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Lorraine_Hansberry.aspx>.
Lorrain was born to the financially well-off Nanie Hansberry and Carl Augustus, on May 19, 1930, in Chicago, Illinois. She was the youngest of four children.
As a result of housing discrimination, African Americans of Every social class lived side by side on crowded South Side streets.
Eventhough Lorraine and her siblings knew pleasures that were foreign to there working class neighbors, there parents infused their children with racial pride and civic responsibility, and encouraged their children to challenge the exclusionary policies of local restaurants and stores.
Hansberry attended public schools: Betsy Ross Elementary and Englewood High School, where she encountered the children of the working class whose independence and courage she came to admire. Their struggle would become the subject of her first major play. Departing from the family tradition of attending black colleges, Hansberry enrolled at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, a predominantly white university, to study journalism, but was equally attracted to the visual arts. She integrated an all-white women's dormitory and became active in the campus chapter of the Young Progressive Association, a national left-wing student organization, serving as its president during her sophomore year. After seeing a moving performance of Sean O'Casey's Juno and the Paycock, she decided to become a writer and to capture the authentic voice of the African American working class.
While participating in a demonstration at New York University, she met Robert Barron Nemiroff, son of progressive Russian Jewish immigrants, and after a short courtship, married him on June 20, 1953.
When her husband cowrote “Cindy Oh Cindy” (1956), a ballad that became an instant hit, the revenue freed Hansberry to devote her full energies to a play about a struggling, working-class black family, like the families who rented her father's properties on Chicago's South Side—A Raisin in the Sun.
Hansberry died of cancer at 35.
" I am ashamed of being alone. or is it my loneliness that makes me ashamed? I have closed the shutters so that no one can see. Me. Alone."
"There is always something left to love. And if you ain't learned that, you aint learned nothin."
"Never be afraid to sit and think awhile."
"Children see things very well sometimes - and idealists even better." THE END Awards
New York Drama Critics Circle Award, 1959, for A Raisin in the Sun
Cannes Film Festival special award, 1961, for A Raisin in the Sun (screenplay)
Full transcript