The American Dream’s Feasibility The American Dream, a source of infinite hope and optimism for the population of America, but is it really likely that it will transform into a reality for most Americans? The answer to this is that no, the American Dream is not a feasible goal for many Americans because of their definition of the dream, the changing expectations from the dream and the stability of the dream leading to crushed hopes and feelings of incompleteness. Firstly, many Americans are not able to create a life outlined by the American Dream because of their definitions of this concept.
Most believe that as a result of working hard, they will be able to achieve the life of unlimited success and wealth along with a loving supportive family. In reality, an individual cannot have everything they wish for because they believe it is the American Dream to have a richer, fuller life. What is overlooked in the definition is that this richer, fuller life can be achieved according to one’s abilities and achievements. Some people chase an impossible dream of plenty of wealth and as a result they do not pay importance to further aspects of good life such as family and friends.
This results in complete unhappiness because of severed or non-existent relationships and not possessing the level of wealth that one wanted. Some people also chase the dream of being wealthy and acquire it as well but in the process they fail to make lasting bonds with other individuals resulting in a rich, lonely life and death. This is evident in the Great Gatsby in which Jay Gatsby chased and eventually gains an abundance of wealth. In the process though, he failed to form relationships with people because he was blinded by his obsession of wealth and Daisy who is the epitome of wealth.
Gatsby eventually dies rich and alone with scarcely anyone, not even Daisy, at his funeral. Owing to the misconception of the definition of American Dream, individuals spend most of their time and energy in acquiring the usually impossible goal of one extreme of a good life instead of the overall good life resulting in unhappiness meaning the American Dream has not been attained. Moreover, the American Dream is not attainable for most Americans because as time progresses and changes, so do the expectations from the dream causing the American Dream to change.
Individuals spend their time and energy pursuing a dream that continues to change and avoid their grasps. As time advances, the desires and the extent of these desires become more difficult to achieve. When the American Dream is achieved, it brings temporary happiness which changes into discontent because eventually individuals become unsatisfied with their possessions along with life and want more. Eventually, when an individual’s desires exceed their capabilities and achievements, the “new and improved” American Dream for that individual is no longer feasible.
For example, in our society today, lifestyles of individuals are becoming more extravagant because of the rapid progression of technology. As a materialistic society, individuals want more and more in life in terms of expensive clothes, latest technology, bigger houses etc… but eventually their demands in life can no longer be satisfied by their income. In their eyes, they are not living an American Dream because their life is not getting any better, richer and fuller. The American Dream is a changing concept as time goes on and as people’s demands in life change.
Since, the American Dream changes constantly, people are not able to keep up with it and therefore it is ultimately not attainable. Lastly, the stability of the American Dream is questionable because of the unfortunate circumstances in the economy. Those who have accomplished the American Dream have to go backwards from the dream in order to survive the struggles of life during a recession. For now, the American Dream is not a goal that can be achieved and stay stable and permanent in a person’s life.
In the article, President Obama who represents hope says regarding the recession in America: “the American Dream in reverse”. This shows the even those who are the personification of hope are hopeless about the existence of the American Dream during the recession. Maybe in the future, acquiring the American Dream will be possible but for the moment, given the recession, the hope for attaining the American Dream is not realistic. In conclusion, the American Dream is not a realistic goal for the majority of Americans.
This is a result of various factors. The first one being the misconception of the definition of the dream causing individuals to pursue unfeasible goals. Next factor is the continuously changing expectations from the dream, and the third one is the instability of the American Dream when it is achieved. Considering the current state of America, it is more important for individuals to hold on to their sources of income in order to fulfill the basic necessities of life rather than chasing a dream that the economy cannot allow.