By Jim Cullen
"The American Dream" is without doubt one of the such a lot accepted and resonant words in our nationwide lexicon, so primary that we seldom pause to invite its beginning, its background, or what it truly skill. during this attention-grabbing brief heritage, Jim Cullen explores the that means of the yank Dream, or relatively the various American desires that experience either mirrored and formed American identification from the Pilgrims to the current. Cullen notes that the U.S., in contrast to so much different countries, defines itself now not at the evidence of blood, faith, language, geography, or shared historical past, yet on a suite of beliefs expressed within the assertion of Independence and consolidated within the structure. on the middle of those beliefs lies the ambiguous suggestion of the yank Dream, an idea that for larger and worse has confirmed to be amazingly elastic and sturdy for centuries and throughout racial, category, and different demographic strains. The model of the yankee Dream that dominates our personal time--what Cullen calls "the Dream of the Coast"--is one in every of own success, of reputation and fortune all of the extra pleasing if accomplished with out visible attempt, which reveals its such a lot insidious expression within the tradition of Hollywood.
Read Online or Download The American Dream: A Short History of an Idea that Shaped a Nation PDF
Best Americas books
You are no fool, after all. you recognize that the yankee Revolution all started whilst these men in Boston threw a few tea off a ship. Or was once it while Paul Revere made his recognized journey? let's accept it: by way of figuring out approximately our nation's fight for independence, our grade-school stories are approximately as reliable as Benedict Arnold.
In 1513, just a couple of years ahead of Cortes conquered the Aztec empire, Juan Ponce de Leon and 3 shiploads of conquistadores landed simply south of what's now St. Augustine, Florida. The Spanish adventurers, besides the fact that, have been speedy pushed away via the Timucua humans; additional landings have been equally defeated by way of the intense archers of the Calusa, who eventually took the lives of Hernandez de Cordoba and Ponce de Leon himself.
Within the dramatic interval resulting in the yank Revolution, no occasion did extra to foment patriotic sentiment between colonists than the armed profession of Boston through British squaddies. as though an Enemy's kingdom is Richard Archer's gripping narrative of these severe months among October 1, 1768 and the iciness of 1770 whilst Boston used to be an occupied city.
This primary quantity of significant matters in American heritage -- 3 volumes of records that conceal the historical past of the US from its cost to the current -- supplies us a beneficiant sampling from the main political controversies within the Colonial interval. incorporated are such files as Richard Hakluyt's "Discourse of Western Planting" (1584), "Letter from Christopher Columbus to the King and Queen of Spain" (undated, most likely 1694), "The 3rd Virginia constitution" (1612), Thomas Paine's "Common experience" (1776) and "The assertion of independence" (July four, 1776).
Extra resources for The American Dream: A Short History of an Idea that Shaped a Nation