Clybourne Park

by

Bruce Norris

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The Younger Family Character Analysis

A black family living in Chicago who purchases Russ and Bev’s home. The members of this family are the protagonists in A Raisin in the Sun, but they do not appear onstage in Clybourne Park. As a result, the audience knows very little about them, though they are referred to frequently during the first act, usually as “the buyers.” Lena is the great niece of the Younger family’s matriarch, also named Lena.

The Younger Family Quotes in Clybourne Park

The Clybourne Park quotes below are all either spoken by The Younger Family or refer to The Younger Family. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Race and Racism Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Farrar, Straus and Giroux edition of Clybourne Park published in 2011.
Act 1 Quotes

Now, Russ, you know as well as I do that this is a progressive community.

Related Characters: Karl Linder (speaker), Russ Stoller, Bev Stoller, Jim, The Younger Family
Page Number: 61
Explanation and Analysis:

Karl: It’s a colored family.
Jim: Sorry, don’t we say Negro, now?
Karl: I say Negro —
Jim: Well, it’s only common courtesy, and I’m —
Karl: — I say them interchangeably
Jim: — not trying to tell you how to conduct your business.
Karl: — and of course I said Negro to them — No I think we both know what you’re doing.

Related Characters: Karl Linder (speaker), Jim (speaker), Russ Stoller, Bev Stoller, Ted Driscoll, The Younger Family
Page Number: 62
Explanation and Analysis:

Karl: Bev, they are one hundred percent. And if I don’t know how much time any of you have spent in Hamilton Park, but Betsy was waiting in the car and I can tell you, there are some unsavory characters.
Russ: Karl?
Karl: But in the case of Gelman’s: I think there was some mistrust at first, having been Kopeckne’s Market for such a long time, but in the end of all Murray Gelman found a way to fit in.
Bev: And they hired the Wheeler boy.

Related Characters: Russ Stoller (speaker), Bev Stoller (speaker), Karl Linder (speaker), Mr. Wheeler, The Younger Family
Page Number: 64
Explanation and Analysis:

And fitting into a community is really what it all comes down to…Now, some would say change is inevitable. And I can support that, if it’s change for the better. But I’ll tell you what I can’t support, and that’s disregarding the needs of the people who live in a community.

Related Characters: Karl Linder (speaker), Bev Stoller, Jim, Murray Gelman, The Younger Family
Page Number: 64
Explanation and Analysis:

Karl: And what happened to love thy neighbor? If we’re being so principled.
Bev: They would become our neighbors.
Karl: And what about the neighbors you already have Bev?
Bev: I care about them, too!
Karl: Well, I’m afraid you can’t have it both ways.

Related Characters: Bev Stoller (speaker), Karl Linder (speaker), Russ Stoller, Jim, The Younger Family
Page Number: 66
Explanation and Analysis:

Jim: —You do find differences in modes of worship. If you take First Presbyterian. Now, that’s a church down in Hamilton Park and I’ve taken fellowship there and I can tell you, the differences are notable.
Bev: Jim?
Jim: Not a value judgment. Apples and oranges. Just as how we have our organ here at Saint Thomas, for accompaniment, whereas at First Presbyterian, they prefer a piano and, occasionally…well, tambourines.

Bev: What’s wrong with tambourines?

Related Characters: Bev Stoller (speaker), Jim (speaker), Karl Linder, The Younger Family
Page Number: 77
Explanation and Analysis:

Bev: And for all we know this family could be perfectly lovely.
Karl: Well, that’s hardly the point, is it?
Bev: Maybe it’s a point to consider.
Karl: Bev, I’m not here to solve society’s problems. I’m simply telling you what will happen, and it will happen as follows: First one family will leave, then another, and another, and each time they do, the values of these properties will decline, and once that process begins, once you break that egg, Bev, all the kings horses, etcetera—

Related Characters: Bev Stoller (speaker), Karl Linder (speaker), The Younger Family
Page Number: 80
Explanation and Analysis:
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