What Was Beneatha’S Attitude Towards God

What was Beneatha’s attitude towards God? She said she did not accept the idea of God — “there is only man and it is he who makes miracles.”

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    Beneatha comments on her mother’s reliance on divine providence. Beneatha has just announced to Ruth and Mama she will be a doctor, putting marriage second. Mama responds to her announcement with “god willing,” which irritates Beneatha, who is tired of hearing about a god who doesn’t seem to help their situation much. Beneatha’s pragmatism and progressive politics position her as a representation of a modern female in the 1950s.

    After Beneatha insults Walter by calling him an assimilationist, Ruth asks her what the term means. Beneatha provides the definition, making it clear that an assimilationist is not a person she could respect. Beneatha’s progressive social views are at odds with her brother’s desire to give in to Lindner and accommodate white culture.

    Beneatha grieves for her dying dream of becoming a doctor. She no longer believes she can attain her goal because the source for tuition money has dried up. She explains that, in her view, curing people is a real way of providing miracles for others. For Beneatha, a politically progressive and pragmatic thinker, helping people is the most important thing a person can do in the world.

    Beneatha is complaining to Asagai that her dreams have been taken from her by her brother, her family, and the world. Her comment that nobody consulted her suggests that her being a woman makes it even more impossible for her to have a future. In this moment of weakness and despair, Beneatha believes her future lies in others’ hands.

    Beneatha wants the family to stop catering to Walter, who she believes has just failed the family by saying he’ll take Lindner’s money. Ruth had anxiously asked if Beneatha had said anything “bad” to him, worrying Beneatha would make Walter feel worse than he already does. Beneatha’s sarcastic response reveals her lack of concern for Walter’s feelings and anger with his decisions.

    Summary: Act I, Scene i

    It is morning at the Youngers’ apartment. Their small dwelling on the South Side of Chicago has two bedrooms—one for Mama and Beneatha, and one for Ruth and Walter Lee. Travis sleeps on the couch in the living room. The only window is in their small kitchen, and they share a bathroom in the hall with their neighbors. The stage directions indicate that the furniture, though apparently once chosen with care, is now very worn and faded. Ruth gets up first and after some noticeable difficulty, rouses Travis and Walter as she makes breakfast. While Travis gets ready in the communal bathroom, Ruth and Walter talk in the kitchen. They do not seem happy, yet they engage in some light humor. They keep mentioning a check.

    Walter scans the front page of the newspaper and reads that another bomb was set off, and Ruth responds with indifference. Travis asks them for money—he is supposed to bring fifty cents to school—and Ruth says that they do not have it. His persistent nagging quickly irritates her. Walter, however, gives Travis an entire dollar while staring at Ruth. Travis then leaves for school, and Walter tells Ruth that he wants to use the check to invest in a liquor store with a few of his friends. Walter and Ruth continue to argue about their unhappy lives, a dialogue that Ruth cuts short by telling her husband, “Eat your eggs, they gonna be cold.”

    Beneatha gets up next and after discovering that the bathroom is occupied by someone from another family, engages in a verbal joust with Walter. He thinks that she should be doing something more womanly than studying medicine, especially since her tuition will cut into the check, which is the insurance payment for their father’s death. Beneatha argues that the money belongs to Mama and that Mama has the right to decide how it is spent. Walter then leaves for his job as a chauffeur—he has to ask Ruth for money to get to work because the money he gave Travis was his car fare.

    Mama enters and goes directly to a small plant that she keeps just outside the kitchen window. She expresses sympathy for her grandson, Travis, while she questions Ruth’s ability to care for him properly. She asks Ruth what she would do with the money, which amounts to $10,000. For once, Ruth seems to be on Walter’s side. She thinks that if Mama gives him some of the money he might regain his happiness and confidence, which are two things Ruth feels she can no longer provide for Walter. Mama, though, feels morally repulsed by the idea of getting into the liquor business. Instead, she wants to move to a house with a lawn on which Travis can play. Owning a house had always been a dream she had shared with her husband, and now that he is gone she nurtures this dream even more powerfully.

    Mama and Ruth begin to tease Beneatha about the many activities that she tries and quits, including her latest attempt to learn how to play the guitar. Beneatha claims that she is trying to “express” herself, an idea at which Ruth and Mama have a laugh. They discuss the man that Beneatha has been dating, George Murchison. Beneatha gets angry as they praise George because she thinks that he is “shallow.” Mama and Ruth do not understand her ambivalence toward George, arguing that she should like him simply because he is rich. Beneatha contends that, for that very reason, any further relationship is pointless, as George’s family wouldn’t approve of her anyway.

    Beneatha makes the mistake of using the Lord’s name in vain in front of Mama, which sparks another conversation about the extent of God’s providence. Beneatha argues that God does not seem to help her or the family. Mama, outraged at such a pronouncement, asserts that she is head of the household and that there will be no such thoughts expressed in her home. Beneatha recants and leaves for school, and Mama goes to the window to tend her plant. Ruth and Mama talk about Walter and Beneatha, and Ruth suddenly faints.


    What does Beneatha claim about God?

    7. In the film, Beneatha tells Mama, “God is just one idea I don’t accept. There simply is no God. There simply is man and it is he who makes miracles.” Mama promptly slaps Beneatha across her face and tells Beneatha, “Now you say after me, ‘In my mother’s house, there is still God.

    How does she react to Beneatha’s denial of God?

    How does she react to Beneatha’s denial of God? Mama herself values religion and her faith very much. When Mama sees Beneathas’ denial of God, she slaps her and tells her that, in their household, there is God. Mama compares her plant to her children.

    How does Beneatha feel about church?

    How does Beneatha feel about Church? How does this contrast with her mother’s feelings? She doesn’t believe in God while Mama’s a strong believer of God.

    Why does Beneatha say she will not marry George?

    Beneatha said she wouldn’t marry George because she thinks he is too shallow.

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