Essay about The Declination of the American Dream

Essay about The Declination of the American Dream

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It was understood that the American Dream was a theory of, which consisted of being a successful person was only through the act of hard work, determination, and persistence. Toward the end of the First World War, America’s mindset started to shift from the impact from the brutality of the war. When the war ended in 1918, a vast majority of the nation felt the devastation and alienation caused from the war. The faith in the American Dream was quickly eroding. Society discovered that honor, dedication, and courage would not protect them in the war as they once thought. All that the American Dream stood for began to shake. During the war, it seemed, the power-thirst and selfish people were rewarded rather than the people who actually made an effort to do the good for all of the people. World War 1 was clarification to society that the American Dream did not match the twentieth century philosophy.
Gertrude Stein, an author during the time of the war, made the comment to another author creating the term herself, “The Lost Generation”. Stein chose the phrase to signify the lost values and beliefs to the generation of Americans. The Lost Generation includes authors who had become of age just after the First World War. This generation was raised on the ideas and values of the American Dream, yet were the first generation to experience society’s morals being challenged and destroyed.
Attempting to make sense of the altering world around them, the authors of the Lost Generation tried looking for new ways of thinking. Because of this reaction to the war, it caused a turning point in American Literature. The works that developed from the aftermath reflected the cynicism and disillusionment experienced during the war. Because of these new...


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... his novel The Great Gatsby. Portraying the people who pursue the dream are more than likely corrupt people who chase material possessions. Fitzgerald displays his point of view through the character Jay Gatsby’s life and the people in his life. Fitzgerald’s unwavering central theme is undeniably the moral decay of the twentieth century.


Works Cited
“American Literature.” Infoplease. Infoplease, 2012. Web. 10 Dec. 2013. http://www.infoplease.com/encyclopedia/entertainment/american-literature-the-lost-generation-after.html.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. "Chapter I." The Great Gatsby. New York, NY: Scribner, 1925. N. pag. Print
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. "Chapter V." The Great Gatsby. New York, NY: Scribner, 1925. N. pag. Print
Matterson, Stephen. “1920’s-1930’s Lost Generation” PBS. PBS, 2003. Web. 8 Dec. 2013. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americannovel/timeline/lostgeneration.html.

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