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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The ability to forge one’s path is a part of the American Dream. Furthermore, diligence characterizes the American Dream. McCandless’s belief that “a challenge in which a successful outcome is assured isn’t a challenge at all” (Krakauer 182) reflects this statement. McCandless’s beliefs and attempts to survive note the necessity of perseverance and
In the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Douglass puts into words the story of his escape from slavery and his journey of becoming a well-educated and inspiring freeman. Douglass’ voyage to freedom was highly influenced and aided by his self-education. Douglass offers two juxtaposing opinions of education & literacy in slave culture one being that education is the road to freedom from slavery the other being that education is what causes slavery to be so miserable. These conflicting viewpoints offer an interesting insight into the horrors of slavery. Douglass believes his education is what aided him in breaking free from the chains of slavery.
Frederick Douglass was one of the only few slaves to be able to read and write and used this ability to free himself. To gain support against slavery, many abolitionists in the 19th century would detail the brutality of slavery as an institution, and explain the helplessness and dejected condition of black slaves under this cruelty. However, I don’t believe Douglass would agree with their statement that black slaves were helpless and dejected. Slaves were physically strong, capable of hope and ambition, and Douglass showed that there are other ways to learn than through a proper education since they did not have one. Under the cruelty of slavery in U.S. history, most slaves were not helpless or dejected and were fully capable of a resistance to slavery.
Ultimately, Frederick Douglass’s upbringing as a slave and his pursuit of education transformed him into an indomitable force against slavery. His early experiences as a child, his acquisition of literacy, and his subsequent dedication to educating others were pivotal in shaping his identity and fueling his passionate advocacy for equality through his eloquent speeches and writings, Douglass exposed the inherent cruelty of slavery and inspired countless individuals to join the fight for freedom and justice. His journey from bondage to empowerment remains a testament to the transformative power of education and the unwavering resilience of the human
It would forever unfit him to be a slave" (Douglass 43). This quote highlights the fear that slave owners had of educated slaves, who were more likely to resist their enslavement and fight for their freedom. Despite these risks, education played a transformative role in Douglass' life. As he remarks "What I got from Sheridan was a bold denunciation of slavery, and a powerful vindication of human rights. The reading of these documents enabled me to utter my thoughts" (Douglass 48-49).
He saw that being literate is the way that can bring meaning into his life, and a tool that can end his slavery too. For instance, even though his mistress stopped teaching him, he did not give up. He starts teaching himself by himself. He sets a goal for himself and he was determined to achieve it, and he did it. Yet, Douglass understood that education is the path to his freedom; the key that can bring meaning to his life as well his to his
Douglass managed to overcome the maltreatment of his wretched slave owners through the eventual attainment of freedom. The injustice imposed upon the African-American slaves by their owners was the crux of Douglass’s motivation to escape this inhumane life. Adolescents in today’s society could use Frederick’s determination as an example of moving forward to better oneself or one’s situation regardless of
It had given me a view of my wretched condition, without the remedy. It opened my eyes to the horrible pit, but to no ladder upon which to get out” (Douglass 27). However, Douglass’s expression of his experiences as a self-taught slave developed a vast influence on his life as it allowed him to escape the severities of slavery and fight for the vindication of enslaved
Furthermore, Education opened Douglass’s eyes to the reality of his injustice as a slave; thus, compelling him to action as he recalls, “In moments of agony, I envied my fellow-slaves for their stupidity. ”(Douglass, 2014, p.133) Education caused Douglass heartache. While attaining his education benefited Douglass, he could not relate to his fellow slaves. The fellow slaves had the ability to remain content with their current state of being since it was all they had ever known. Douglass knew otherwise and longed for the forbidden life as a free man, as it changed from an unattainable idea into an achievable
The American dream at one point was what drew people to American; the right to life, liberty, and the happiness. The American dream is the hope to acquire currency, large homes, raise a middle-class family, and pursue what brings people joy in life. But in the year 2016, the American dream becomes hard to believe in. The American dream may still exist, but it is not equally accessible to all Americans. This is true because the American dream is not affordable for everyone, it is not available to everyone from different degrees of education, and race and ethnicity creates large social barriers.
The American dream is a dream of land in which life should be better and richer for everyone. It’s a land where people succeed to accomplish their ambition of a better life. Most of the people have a different way of defining this American Dream. Unfortunately, for some, it could mean wealth,status,or power whereas for others it could mean companionship, good morals,love,and amity. According to our Declaration of Independence, it entitles every man and woman the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
No matter who you are or where you have come from, you have undoubtedly heard of the American Dream. The idea that no matter who you are or where you have come from, you can do whatever it is you desire in America. What was once one the main driving forces for immigrants to flock to the new world, has slowly changed over the years, but still holds its value in the eyes of those who are looking for a promising new place to live. The American dream might not hold the same awe inspiring sound that it once did, but for many generations before ours it was a beacon of hope that helped build the foundation that the United States was built on. And, still, today the American dream might not be as achievable as it once was, but it is still an important
Douglass is always curious and he never gives up even when he finds several obstacles in his way, because he perfectly knows what his goal is: he needs an education to get his freedom. He is determined to get it even though it requires a lot of hard work. Douglass is sure of the potential of education. As a matter of fact he knows well that knowlegde can change his life while leading him to freedom. Douglass has both the motivation and the determination because he is aware that owing to education he can get to great places in his life, and that education makes the world a better place
Education was an integral part of Douglass’s life, and he would not have escaped slavery if it were not for his persistence in learning. (Andrews). Another prominent aspect of Douglass’s narrative is the call for action which led to his freedom. Rather than being