What is The American Dream? and is it Attainable?

Essay by ls62805University, Bachelor'sA, June 2006

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What is the "American Dream"? When people from oppressed lands hear America, they immediately think of jobs and freedom, an opportunity to begin a new life. They imagine a place in which the streets are literally paved in gold, and they dream of a country where everyone is treated equal. Immigrants envision a country where their children can attend school to obtain a proper education, and a country where their children will not go to bed with hunger in their stomachs. Also people view it as the faith held by any person that through constant work, courage and simple willpower one can achieve a life which they never thought possible. Many of these values were held by European immigrants and passed on to following generations. What this dream has turned into is a topic of constant debate, leading many people to use the possession of material goods or wealth as a measure or pleasure or success.

A prime example of this point is the new bumper sticker for cars which reads "Who ever dies with the most toys wins" honestly is this what people have come to? A race to see who can buy the fastest car, biggest house, or the newest designer clothes. If this is what the American Dream has turned into then people coming here from other countries to experience the prosperities of the dream are in for a shock.

Who are the people most likely to pursue its often elusive fulfillment? Indeed, the American Dream has come to represent the attainment of a multitude of goals that are specific to each individual. While one person might consider a purchased home with a white picket fence his or her version of the American Dream, another might regard it as the financial ability to operate...