Essay Example: What is the American Dream?

In this essay on the American dream, as several others have, we shall attempt to answer the question “what is the American dream?” Each American can give their unique answer to this question, but there is an underlying aspect of success and prosperity. The American dream has been the driving force for all the immigrants that have set destination for the US. The dream has been an idea that has been passed down from one generation to the next since the founding of the nation some few hundred years ago. Many have pursued the model for their own, family or children’s legacies.

The American dream is a phenomenon that has existed in the American society for quite some time and has been modified and evolved according to the current expectations. It has followed the nation’s history path and has always been a reflection of what the society describes as success. Many decades ago, the dream was the simple notion of getting ahead and achieving everything that the parents weren’t able to attain. The mindset was simple at the time: children to get a better education and career options minus artificial obstacles. The dawn of the postmodern era forced the Americans to adopt the mindset that people should not be discriminated based on their race, ethnicity, religion, class, caste or any other cultural construction.

Factors such as the Great Depression, slow and inadequate economic progress, wars and conflicts, scarce resources and unemployment made the early generations work continuously and tirelessly to make ends meet. They had little time; no money and other benefits that the current generations have that could have guaranteed their dreams. The societal advancements have dictated the American dream to change shape to accommodate the new opportunities that have developed primarily through technological advancements.

Many opinions and definitions exist that support and oppose the American Dream ideology. Many people have come to the US because they believed in the American Dream that makes the US the land of opportunity. The American culture is entirely different from other countries with comfortable lifestyles, friendly people, and more relaxed businesses, companies, and jobs. The American culture is not rigid and gives immigrants a chance to continue practicing their heritages and religious preferences. The general idea of freedom is realized at the highest levels in the US than in many countries.

The following notions are as a result of the firm belief in the American dream and responsible for contributing to the immigration experienced in the US:

  • Make fast money
  • Better education opportunities
  • Make one’s life better
  • Achieve success through working hard
  • Political Gain
  • Advanced medical facilities and techniques
  • Potential for achieving or becoming whatever one wishes

Despite the American dream being ideally universally beneficial to all in the US, there have been some negative values that developed alongside it. For instance, the American system allows some individuals to become wealthier than others. Some scholars argue that the advancements, growth, and prosperity the US economy has achieved came about as a result of the many opportunities that were created through the American Dream rather than the notion of equality of income.

There are several scholars who hold the view that the American dream is not a concept one merely hopes to attain, but rather one must be willing to work for to achieve success by whatever means necessary and possible. We all desire the fancy lifestyle promised in the American dream, but the question arises, are you willing to work for it? We might have an affirmative answer, but not everybody will ever pursue their dreams, and only those that seek their goals have the chance of achieving them;

Freedom

Equality

Opportunity

The above values of the American dream are hypothetically available to every American. From the benefits, you can draw from the simplest to the most complex perspectives. The idea of the American dream has attracted the attention of scholars worldwide, and in the process, they have applied several theories, held different beliefs and had various accomplishments in the attempt of describing the phenomena.

As the American dream of origin is attributed to the founding fathers, their ideology is apparent in the idea. Take every opportunity available to you to advance your country and yourself. Achieving the plan is a complicated process that embroils a path of knowledge, perceiving the available resources, self-belief, determination, change and steadfastness.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. acknowledged that the American dream is born in the words of the Declaration of Independence, “We embrace these truths as self-evidence, that all mankind are created equal…with Rights, Liberty Life, and the pursuit of Happiness.” He advocates for the idea that all men originate from God the Creator and that we are all equal before the creator. He accepts the notion that it is for all men to be free and equal as the creator intended.

For the American dream to be achieved, on the whole, there must be a radical revolution to change the American value system. For America to become a united family, there is need to distinguish the additional classes that areas a result of the power struggle. With less than 10% of the population sitting on more than 80% of wealth with over 50% sharing less than meager 3% of the wealth, there is a need for class distinctions mostly advocated for by the rich. If the value system shifts the orientation from objects to people, then the American dream can achieve a label-less society.

In general, the American dream can be described as a cultural component of the American society that acts as a unifying factor for the Americans. As other cultural components, it survives over the generations through the process of socialization. A new member of the society is instilled with this ideology through social and mass media as well as other agents of mass socialization.

The American dream can be classified as a sub-culture within the general American culture. The American dream is now a reality in which many American and other nationals have achieved. Several components of the American dream ideology portray characteristics similar to the primary culture. Some Americans have been entirely indulged in chasing the dream while some are living the dream. In general, it is the belief that the American dream is an enabling atmosphere full of opportunities for the advancement of each person and the entire community as well.

Conclusion

A dream means a happy ending and a happy outcome. The American dream has withstood the test of time to be called a dream. It is now an ultimate dream because of its impact globally not only to Americans but also to several other people from several nationalities. You can always go through this American dream essay example for some more insight into the idea of what other people bear in mind about the concept of the American dream.