American Dream Essay, Research Paper
Show how Willy Loman’s “American Dream” of success can be compared to at least three other works of literature we have read this semester and their main character’s interpretation of the “American Dream” of success. Mention specific examples to support your thesis.
Nearly every American has a different view of what the “American Dream” really is. To some, it’s money, to other’s fame, and popularity. To Willy Loman, that American Dream meant raising the ideal All-American family, having a successful career, and most importantly, being well-liked. He became obsessed with making his family conform to the standards of the perfect family outlined in his American dream. His son was the all-star football player, he lived in a nice house filled with ambitions and hopes for the future, with a loving wife and wonderful career. Unfortunately, this lifestyle fell to pieces over the years, and soon, all his life became was the idea of the American dream.
In The Great Gatsby, Gatsby has a similar view of the American Dream. He dreams of living the extravagant lifestyle with lavish parties and popularity and fame. He, like Loman, appears to be living the Dream (Loman’s earlier days) but this was all an illusion, because in reality, Gatsby had no friends, and only gained his riches through criminal activities. Most importantly though, was that he was without Daisy, his one love. He felt that once he had her, his dream would be complete. He had an idealistic dream of Daisy and him living in a perfect world.
Unfortunately, his view of Daisy was romanticized and idealized. She is his dream because in his heart, that is what he needed to complete his American dream, not because he was really in love with her.
In Of mice and Men, Lennie and George shared a view of their version of the American dream. Despite their loneliness and powerlessness, they take comfort in their dream of a better life. A life without someone making them work and taking away the fruits of their labor. They dream of owning their own farm and tending to it themselves with helpers they’ve hired. To them, this is a version of being “rich”.
– Nearly every American has a different view of what the “American Dream” really is. To some, it’s money, to other’s fame, and popularity. Nonetheless, every individual American Dream is characterized by a desire of something that is unattainable – unattainable because of a certain character flaw that holds this person back from true happiness.