The American Dream: A False Sense of Hope Essay

The American Dream: A False Sense of Hope Essay

Length: 1532 words (4.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

In an average day, an American is exposed to over 3000 advertisements, (Kilbourne). Whether they want to admit it or not, they are drawn toward them. A common scheme of the advertisers is to allow the consumer to “picture the new them.” Whether this be a wealthier them, a skinner them, or a prettier them, they gear there product towards every person and want everyone be able to connect with the advertisement and picture the “new them.” American Idol, Nutrisystem, and The Biggest Loser, the lottery, and many other “products” promote that anyone has the chance to be famous, fit, or fortunate. The successes from these “products” present themselves as they were before, with the sob story that hopefully touches a nerve with Americans, or the “consumer”. Then, like some sort of miracle occurred, they are the “new them,” giving a testimonial that “you can do it too!” and you can be who you have always wanted to be. However, the sad reality is that these people are lucky. It rarely happens that someone makes it in the music industry in a matter of months, looses two-hundred pounds in less than a year, or wins millions of dollars within days of buying a piece of paper. Because few exploit the American Dream by promising wealth or fame to many others, a false sense of hope has been created for those who are economically marginalized.
In our country’s long history, there have been many similar accounts of these events. From the stories of Horatio Alger to multiple classic Disney films to some of the world’s most famous celebrities, there has always been a time where a person has risen from a lower economical ranking to being successful and wealthy. Surprisingly however, the concept of the American Dream is a fairly new i...


... middle of paper ...


...companies uses their advertisements to allow the consumer to picture the “new them,” and how many advertisements draw Americans in because of their promises. This statistic is not biased, because is not for or against one side of my argument.

RECORDING SOURCES

Zippel, David. Zero to Hero. Prod. Alan Menken. Perf. Tawatha Agee, Lillias White, LaChanze, Roz Ryan, Cheryl Freeman, and Vanéese Y. Thomas. Walt Disney Records, 1997. CD.

The song, Zero to Hero, is a song off of the Hercules: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack. The song is about Hercules being a farmer’s son and rising back to the rankings of the Greek Gods. The phrase “zero to hero” was originally coined from this song. The phrase ties in with my argument as being a common term used when describing how someone came to fame or fortune. This song does not present a bias towards my argument.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Reclaiming the American Dream Through Community Service Essays

- In his essay, “Economy,” Henry David Thoreau argues that luxuries do not provide happiness. More specifically, Thoreau argues that luxuries hinder the development of humans; he says, “Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind. With respect to luxuries and comforts, the wisest have ever lived a more simple and meagre life than the poor” (13). In this passage, Thoreau is suggesting that it is wise not to live a luxurious life....   [tags: American Dream Essays]

Powerful Essays
1259 words (3.6 pages)

The Emptiness of the American Dream in The Great Gatsby Essay

- Jay Gatsby’s sole purpose in life is to achieve the American Dream: to become a land owner, married to the love of his life, who live in comfort and abundance. However, he never gets everything he wants as his love for Daisy is not as fully reciprocated as he wishes it to be. His dream, and the one Nick pursues as well, are only dreams in the end. The culture of the time only gives empty fulfillment with no real substance. The people, like their dreams, are only illusions of what they want to be....   [tags: American Dream Essays]

Powerful Essays
1122 words (3.2 pages)

The Honest Truth of the American Dream: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

- The Honest Truth of the American Dream An Analysis of "The Great Gatsby" Throughout history people pursue three simple concepts that they believe will lead them to a perfect life; freedom, to be independent, and the ability to advance and succeed in their life. These three ideas are major components of what has become known as the American dream, a dream that is beautiful in the fact that it provides people with hope and a goal. This dream is what caused so many settlers to travel to the new world, the idea of being able to be anyone they wanted to be, even in modern times it still draws thousand if not millions to its magnificent idea....   [tags: inequality, false hope, false prophet]

Powerful Essays
1049 words (3 pages)

Essay on The American Dream in the Writings of F. Scott Fitzgerald

- F. Scott Fitzgerald was one of the most influential writers of modern day society. He holds this title because he wrote about things that drive people's everyday life. He wrote in two different periods that were very significant in the social development of America. These two periods of time symbolized not only the generation that he was writing about, but it also speaks to the present day generation. The first period that he wrote in was called the Jazz Age. The Jazz Age took place in the years between 1920 and 1929....   [tags: Essay on the American Dream]

Powerful Essays
1118 words (3.2 pages)

Death Of A Salesm The American Dream Essay

- The United States of America is perceived to be the nation where everyone has the chance to succeed, an ethos which has been dubbed the American Dream. The Dream, which is truly a dream, is that every man, woman, and child can succeed if they work hard enough. Yet, in Death of a Salesman the American Dream is dead. The debate as to whether or not the American Dream is functioning has always been based on the perspective of whoever is judging it. In essence, a person’s social, political, and economic situation shapes their decisions as to whether or not it is alive and well....   [tags: Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller, Demonstration]

Powerful Essays
2022 words (5.8 pages)

Rise And Fall Of The American Dream Essay

- Rise and fall of the American dream F.Scott Fitzgerald 's 'The Great Gatsby ' display what our society call the American Dream of a vulnerable gain of money, and fabricated fantasy Each main character in the novel leads a binary life, one in which they appear successful, and thus joyful, and one where the financial success is inappreciable, and yet they are happy. Gatsby is regarded by most people as notably successful, with a vast house, apparel and cars in excess, and some extraordinary parties....   [tags: F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby]

Powerful Essays
1031 words (2.9 pages)

Achieving the American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller Essay example

- Achieving the American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller Willy Loman is a man on a mission. His purpose in life is to achieve a false sense of the "American Dream," but is this what Willy Loman really wants. In Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller analyzes the American Dream by portraying to us a few days in the life of a washed up salesman named Willy Loman. The American Dream is a definite goal of many people, meaning something different to everyone. Willy's version is different from most people though; his is based more on being well-liked and achieving monetary successes rather than achieving something that will make him happy....   [tags: Death of a Salesman Arthur Miller Essays]

Powerful Essays
1202 words (3.4 pages)

The Great Gatsby: The Morally Corrupt American Dream Essay example

- Exposing the Morally Corrupt American Dream     The 1920’s were a decade of renaissance characterized by the establishment of the "American Dream" -- the belief that anyone can, and should, achieve material success. F. Scott Fitzgerald's most famous novel, The Great Gatsby, contains themes and morals that continue to be relevant today. In his novel, Fitzgerald criticizes the American Dream by describing its negative characteristics: class struggles between the rich and the poor, the superficiality of the rich, and the false relationship between money and happiness....   [tags: Great Gatsby Essays]

Powerful Essays
1073 words (3.1 pages)

Essay about The American Dream, And All Its Splendor (Great Gatsby)

- The 1920s were a decade of rebirth characterised by the founding of the "American Dream" -- the belief that anyone can, and should, achieve material success. The defining writer of the 1920s was F. Scott Fitzgerald whose most famous novel, The Great Gatsby, has become required reading for present-day high school students. We study Fitzgerald's novel for the same reason we study Shakespeare. The literature composed by both authors contains themes and morals that continue to be relevant to modern society....   [tags: essays research papers fc]

Powerful Essays
816 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on Great Gatsby American Dream

- Thesis: In this passage, Fitzgerald's stylistic choices illustrate his concern with America's path of loneliness and isolation if they continue to pursue a corrupted American dream. Fitzgerald juxtaposes harsh commanding images & sound of nature with soft sounds and mans attempt to overpower nature in order to show mans greed in the age of the "bigger, better, faster" mentality. In this passage, Fitzgerald uses imagery and symbolism to portray his thoughts of the American dream. Fitzgerald uses vivid and lively words such as "summer," "wind," "earth," "trees," "frogs," "stars," and "heavens" to create an image of life and purity....   [tags: F. Scott Fitzgerald]

Free Essays
1092 words (3.1 pages)