“A Raisin in the Sun” is a 1961 film adapted from Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 play about the fictional Younger family. The Youngers are a Black family living on Chicago’s Southside and thus far their dreams of a better life have been held in check by poverty and racism. As the family’s matriarch awaits a possibly life-changing insurance check resulting from her husband’s death, her son and daughter have hopes of using the money to pursue their dreams. The story follows the lives of the Youngers for a few weeks and explores their current lives versus their aspirations.
“The Color of Law” by Richard Rothstein charts the history of how local, state, and federal government policies and programs segregated cities across America. It disputes the widely promoted idea that individual racism and racist beliefs were the sole cause of housing segregation and the resulting discrimination that followed. Reaching back to the first wave of the Great Migration in the 1920s, Rothstein thoroughly explains how in most cases, the government led the charge in creating segregated communities even in locations where none had previously existed and citizens had no desire for these restrictive zoning patterns.