The American Dream Exposed in The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara

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Money constitutes the American Dream, because in America, to be successful in life means being wealthy. We live in an industrialized nation, in which money controls our very own existence. The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara establishes an argument about society’s injustice that entails financial opportunities by revealing the differences in living conditions between upper class and lower class. Another important point Stephen Cruz, a successful business person and a Professor at the University of Wisconsin at Platteville, makes in his speech is that the American Dream is getting progressively ambiguous, because the vision of success is being controlled by power and fear which only benefit 1 percent of Americans. For most people, the American Dream is to be financially stable to the point of content; however, realistically the accomplishment of the American Dream is often obstructed by society’s limitations and influences from higher power. Although we live in a democratic nation, many job opportunities are offered mostly based on race, nationality, and social class. The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara illustrates how the society limits lower class citizens, mostly African Americans in New York, from career prosperity. The undemocratic economy system in America positions the values of money and limits career opportunity based on social class difference. Bambara demonstrates the harsh realization of reality for the financially unfortunate kids after they went to “F.A.O. Schwarz”, an expensive toy store in New York. Miss Moore took the children on a field trip to Fifth Avenue to show them the important economic issues many Americans currently faced. Miss Moore’s effort is to teach the children about how much ... ... middle of paper ... ... continuous injustice in financial prospect because the top dogs are too occupied with new ways of making money for themselves while the rest of America are focused on putting a roof over their heads or feeding the entire family. For few fortunate individuals, they will be able to accomplish their ultimate American Dream; however, most Americans will often shun away for the life time of financial progression. Like George Carlin, a comedian once said during his stand up show about the American Dream, “The owners in this country know the truth, it is called the American dream because you have to be asleep to believe it.” In reality, when the prospects of the American Dream is ignored by our society, dreams often become unfilled and expectations for superior life turn out to be a sham, an enduring nightmare for most people in the pursuit for their American dream.

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