The American Disconnect: Achieving The American Dream

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The American Disconnect My Great Grandfather, at the age of 15, hopped on a boat from Poland and sailed to New York to escape the Nazi reign. In New York, he swept floors at a barber shop until he made enough money to invest in stocks. He became very wealthy after much hard work, achieving the American Dream, and becoming the epitome of the rags to riches stories that are so inspiring among Americans. Achieving the American Dream is a quintessential desire to native born Americans and immigrants as well. The American Dream is the opportunity for every American to create a great life for themselves based on economic prosperity and happiness. However, there are many definitions of the American Dream. Famous artist, Edward Hopper accurately …show more content…
This concept of working hard and achieving great success has inspired Americans to this day and has encouraged them to fulfill their dreams. When America declared its independence in 1776, the foundation for the American Dream was set as, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” (“Declaration of Independence”) became the new motto. Americans were enthralled to experience a country that was accepting, could provide them with unity, unrestricted boundaries for different social classes and hopefully, a life of economic stability if they worked hard enough. The basic foundation of the American Dream that Americans center their lives around has not changed much. Most interpret the American Dream as, “a dream of being able to grow to the fullest development as man and woman, unhampered by barriers” (Adams). With this dream they sought a lifetime of achievements and were determined to overcome the stigma that lower classes could not succeed. From the birth of America and onwards into future, the stories of people who have worked vigorously to achieve success have inspired these Americans to do the same. However, while seeking the American Dream many people end up isolating themselves because of how self-driven one must be to become …show more content…
In the painting, a man and woman sit with their shoulders nearly touching, but they are not looking at each other. The woman is holding a dollar bill in her hand, yet looks unhappy and very detached from reality. The dollar represents the accumulation of wealth that one may acquire if they work hard and become successful. However, the road to success is a lonely one. This wealthy woman and man sitting next to her have completely isolated themselves so they could achieve the American Dream. This pair is also completely unaware of the man sitting across from them, who is just as isolated and alone as they are. Also, the similar theme of being trapped in one’s own world is conveyed in this painting. There are no doors pictured in the painting which illustrates the concept that Americans are focused on themselves and trapped inside their minds without any care for others. This bar appears to be situated in the city, but there is no one out on the streets. The city is desolate which leads to the feeling of aloneness and isolation. During this time period Americans had to be focused on themselves so they could make their lives better which Edward Hopper was able to depict throughout his paintings in the mid

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