Essay Defining The American Dream


AP English Language & CompositionP1

Definition Essay: “American”

“What is an American?”

- This question lingers in our minds as we try toexecute a proper rendition for a culture so diverse that it renders the reputationas one of the most influential societies in the world. What makes an Americangoes beyond the definition of the book; its strategic geographical location on thewestern hemisphere or the acquisition of an American passport inadequatelydefines the characteristics of being an American. Being an American is morethan being a legalized citizen of the country, but rather, recognizing the visionand ideas of a better society - the American Dream

that surrounds the belief of equality and liberty reflected by the Founding Fathers as they forged theDeclaration of Independence. Despite the diversity between ethnic appearanceand language that prospers in America until today, what makes a true Americanis the shared belief of Freedom, Equality and the ambition for prosperity.

America’s populat 

ion is composed of a wide variety of ethnic groups that 

migrated in search of a better opportunity to prosper. Being dubbed as the “landof the Free” ethnicities from dif 

ferent parts of the world, may it be the first settlers

during Columbus’ time or to th

e ancestral immigrants who came in fromnearby countries like Mexico or from a far-flung peninsula in South East Asia.Regardless of their racial roots and appearance, these settlers has establishedtheir cultural identity around the American culture and traditions and hasaccepted it as their own are enough characteristics and qualities to be defined as

an “American.”

The American dream has always been a staple of American culture. When people speak of it, they often refer back to the first half of the 20th century. Despite this, the American Dream is just as relevant to American culture today as it was in the last century. In this essay, we will explore the American dream and just what it is.

Firstly, it’s important to mention the American dream isn’t measured based on what an individual has. It has to be measured on its principles and how they apply to society. Although the American dream isn’t as distinct from the rest of the world as it once was, it still makes America what it is today.

The first part of the American dream is the dream of abundance. The dream of abundance is the ability of America to have a country filled with material goods. It remains the envy of the world today as a nation of producers and consumers. Few countries can match the sheer range of goods America has.

Next, we have the dream of a democracy of goods. This is the ability of everyone to purchase the goods of America, regardless of where they come from and who they are. It links back to the constitutional right of everyone to be free and equal. To fulfil this part of the constitution, the dream of a democracy of goods has to exist.

The dream of freedom of choice is the third part of the American dream and, again, ties back in to the American constitution. It allows people to fashion their own lifestyles using the goods on offer. People have the freedom to be who they want to be, and they aren’t restricted by the supply of goods on offer.

Finally, we have the dream of novelty. This represents a broadening of consumer choice. Fashions are allowed to change at will. It has a deep impact on American society. It means the current skills in demand are forever changing. The people don’t have to specialise in specific areas just to get along in life. They can be sure there will always be a demand for niche skills, which allows them more freedom of choice.

One can say the American dream has been born out of the constitution. It’s the constitution that allows it to exist. Without the rights enshrined in this document, the American dream wouldn’t be able to persevere.

Today, the American dream is still relevant. How people achieve this dream has changed, but the basic principles of it haven’t. The difference today is young people may go to college instead of an apprenticeship to go about their pursuit of the American dream.

In conclusion, the American dream is about both choice in the consumer industry and unlimited freedom of choice. These are principles Americans demand in everything they do. In many ways, the American dream has grown to symbolise more than just the consumer industry. The American dream is a symbol of a strong America as a whole.

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