The American Dream Obstacles Essay

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The “American dream” is the belief that hard work and determination can lead to success regardless of background or circumstances. With this belief comes assumptions of what one might want to achieve; an assumption of what everyone wants. Of course, it is impossible for everyone to want the exact same thing and unrealistic to believe that everyone can achieve the same thing the same way given the diverse range of circumstances, ranging from financial hardships to discrimination and prejudice. The American dream is not every American's dream nor is achieving it the same experience for everyone. With the “American dream” comes flaws and unexpected setbacks and obstacles that inevitably lead to disillusionment. The “American dream” is simply …show more content…

The difficulty in reaching the American dream varies on the circumstances of the person and it is not the same experience for everyone. Born into slavery and denied any opportunity to learn like the other children, Douglass faced many obstacles. In his journey of education and escape he was the only person ultimately always there for himself. His experiences as a slave and even after escaping, the large gap between the “American dream” and actual reality is hard to miss. “I succeeded in learning to read and write.” (Douglass 85). This quote applies to the American dream because education plays a big role in the stereotypical American dream. Douglass didn’t have the same advantages as other children did and he still found a way to educate himself regardless of the situation he was in. The American dream is about being successful and even though Douglass was at a disadvantage because of the inequality in that time period, he was able to achieve one of the main goals when it comes to the American dream, education. “I would at times feel that learning to read had been a curse rather than a blessing.” (Douglass 35). This quote demonstrates the hardships Douglass faced when it came to education. With the knowledge he gained came a sudden sense of awareness of the inequality and injustice he faced. This however did still feed his desire for freedom and motivate him later on to officially go through with his plan no matter what happened. Frederick Douglass faced many obstacles during his time as a slave including constant dehumanization. “You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.” (Douglass 57). The amazing transformation he took from being dehumanized and treated like an animal to being assertive, even to his master, and eventually independent shows how the difficulty in reaching the American dream is always

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