Lena Younger ("Mama")

Lena Younger, also known as “Mama,” is one of the strongest and motivating characters of the play by Lorraine Hansberry. Despite the fact that the play tells a life story of Walter Lee Younger, Mama appears to be a person that has a significant influence on the development of the plot. This woman is quite poor and always experiences a lack of money. Day after day, she has to work a lot and solve a great number of problems in order to meet the ends and bring up her beloved children. At the same time, she always raises her chin up, feeling proud for them. For sure, she has no material wealth; nonetheless, she feels blessed and is happy with her family that is her greatest treasure. In this way, it is not a surprise that her children are everything for her and she dedicates her life to them completely. 

In her life, Lena Younger experienced a significant number of difficulties and managed to survive the death of her baby and the death of her beloved husband. All these difficulties made her strong and confident and made her closer to God and church. Therefore, if there are some problems, Mama addresses God first and asks for happiness for all the members of her family. In comparison to educated and progressive Beneatha,  Lena Younger is described to be an old-fashioned woman who follows the standard pattern of a traditional woman. Thus, she would forgive numerous cheatings of her husband in order to save the family and considers the improper behavior of her family members to be some insufficient factor. As a result, she tends to spoil the behavior of her grandson and is kind to all her children despite they cause a lot of problems and difficulties. 

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Lena Younger ("Mama") in the Essays