English 101

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Although Mantsios does not focus on the Horatio Alger myth as does Harlon Dalton, both authors concern themselves with seeing beyond the myths of success to underlying realities. Compare the ways these two writers challenge the American mythology of success. Do these two authors complement each other or do you see fundamental disagreements between them? Whose approach do you find more persuasive, insightful, or informative, and why? For your post, you can choose to respond to any one of the above prompts.

America historically owns the reputation of being the land of opportunity, and for generations immigrants have fled to the United States to experience the freedom and equality our government lays claim to. At the root of this reputation is the American Dream, the belief that with hard work anyone can succeed based solely on his or her merits, and is believed to be [American Dream] blind to race, sex, or socioeconomic status, conversely, repeated examples and statistics of the lower-classes, those continually facing the harsh reality that opportunity and equality are just myths, only prove the opposite. The truth of the matter is that influence of a class on an individual’s identity is greater than many would like to perceive. The main reason for this misconception is the fact that everyone wants to hear what they can accomplish and not what factors stand in their way, keeping them far from reality. The idea of what factors affect identity, and most importantly, what are the underlying realities of the American mythology of success has been touched upon by many writers, among them are Gregory Mantsios in “Class in America” and Harlon Dalton in “Horatio Alger.” Even though these two writers have confronted the last topic [American mythology of success] in different ways complementing each other, I still believe that Gregory Mantsios has been more persuasive, and insightful on his approach. To prove that the American Dream is not equally attainable to all,...
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