Up until now, the term American Dream is still a popular concept on how Americans or people who come to America should live their lives and in a way it becomes a kind of life goal. However, the definitions of the term itself is somehow absurd and everyone has their own definition of it. The historian James Tuslow defines American Dream as written in his book titled “The Epic of America” in 1931 as “...dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.” The root of the term American Dream is actually can be traced from the Declaration of Independence in 1776 which stated “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that
The American Dream, it’s something as old as America itself and continues to live on. However, what is the “American Dream” exactly? It’s something that has changed over and over, and has been disputed over for centuries. First, it was to become the perfect society and person through God as defined by the Puritans (the first settlers in America), the it shifted to being the peak of moral and intellectual perfection with the Rationalists, who were revolutionaries such as Benjamin Franklin. The Transcendentalists are a group undefined by an era in time, for they were present in all stages of America’s history, and continue to be present. They had more modern views such as self reliance, and individualism; a continual theme we see today in what people describe as the American Dream. Besides that however, one wouldn’t see much resemblance to our country’s past ideals. Today the American Dream is all about money. As a nation we idolize people who have seemingly overcome huge life obstacles by themselves in rags-to-riches stories, and then we question why we can’t do the same. We ask ours...
The American Dream
1. Give an outline of how the American Dream is interpreted in text 2, 3 and 4:
The second text: “Arnold Schwarzenegger Recalls Lessons From 25 Years as a U.S citizen – Learn English, Participate in Politics, and give back”, from 2008 by Arnold Schwarzenegger, mentions the immigrants who are keen to fulfil their dreams in America – ‘the Promised Land’. The newcomers have to learn three vital things if they want to act out the American Dream. First of all, it is essential to learn the English language so you can collaborate in the society and adapt to the culture.
The “American Dream” is something that can affect anyone, good or bad. It creates a goal that some may be able to achieve. The American Dream is “an American social ideal that stresses egalitarianism and especially material prosperity; also the prosperity or life that is the realization of this ideal” (Merriam Webster). When the “American Dream” was first used it was in a book called “The Epic of America” written by the American historian, James Truslow Adams. When this book was written America was going through a difficult time, The Great Depression. In his book he used the “American Dream” to describe the complex beliefs, religious promises and political and social expectations (America Day Dreamer). The “American Dream” can mean many different depending on who you ask. It can be compared to many different types and styles of literature. It can go a closely along with different works of literature as well, such as “A Dream Deferred” by Langston Hughes. Despite all of the different definitions and ideals, each American is working harder and getting closer to the goal of the “American Dream”
The American Dream: an American social ideal that stresses egalitarianism and especially material prosperity; also: the prosperity or life that is the realization of this ideal. (Webster Dictionary) For many generations, people have searched for fulfillment through the idea of the American Dream. People who strive to achieve: wealth, happiness, social status, and who want to change their lives have chased this idea. Those who strive to achieve greatness in the American Dream try to climb up the social ladder and out of poverty to make something out of themselves. Though the American Dream promises a change for the better, it often falls short of fulfilling the success and sometimes leads to the downfall of its victims.
“The ‘American Dream” is a crock. Stop wanting everything. Everyone should wear jeans, have three t-shirts, and eat rice and beans.” – Bill Hicks
The American Dream. This concept is well known as the picture perfect family, nice house and the white picket fence. As well as succeeding and excelling in life and making the future generations lives better than the current one. This concept has contributed much of the immigration from as early as 1931 to present day. However, many immigrants immigrate to the United States in order to escape oppression as well as uprising and turmoil which may reside in their home country. Though society often places people none the less immigrants into categories from social class, heritage, and prejudice they share a common thread of hope as well as facing obstacles in their journeys and once they arrive to the states. An example of this common thread of escaping their homeland in order to pursue new experiences and hopeful new life yet experiencing different hardships are shown when looking at both the Mexicans and the Irish.
The first tenet of the American Dream is that the Dream is open to all. The chance to start again, to live a better life, is a theme that runs deep in American culture, across all socioeconomic statuses. Hothschild argues that people cannot reasonable pick up and begin again, weakening the tenet that the dream is open to everyone. The successful have become the face of the Dream, to the exclusion to multitudes of others. The right to become successful only works for those who begin to succeed.
Thomas Paine was an Englishman who came to America in 1774. He was born in England in 1737, born into a poor family. He went to school until he was thirteen. After that, he quit in order to help his father provide for his family. For years he tried to find jobs, but he failed at finding a job he was happy with. Paine moved to America because of a meeting with Benjamin Franklin. Franklin gave Paine letters of introduction, and Paine arrived in Philadelphia. Once he arrived, he began writing for the Pennsylvania Magazine, and became an editor. His writing was against the slave trade and slavery. Paine was recognized for writing his pamphlet Common Sense. In this pamphlet he explained that the colonies needed immediate sovereignty. In 1776, Common Sense was a success. The pamphlet prepared the Americans to write the Declaration of Independence shortly after. The things Thomas Paine wrote convinced many colonists to fight for home rule. (Gale, 1)
To do what makes oneself happy. The American Dream is represented in many different ways and every person lives and chases a different version of the American Dream. Chris McCandless lived his American dream by walking alone into the wilderness of Alaska. The song written by Toby Keith, “American Soldier”, shows the price some pay for their dreams and ours to come true. Jay Gatsby died trying to acheive his dream and get the girl he loved, but died happy because he had pursued her until his death. The band All Time Low wrote a song called “The Reckless and The Brave” that brings a new light to how we go about achieving our dreams. So I believe that the American Dream is all about doing what will make you the happiest in the end.