I Am Joaquin vs. the First Sev

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Sometimes many similarities can be found between two completely different works of literature. The poem “I am Joaquin” and the short story “The First Seven Years” at the same time exhibit both contrasting positions and similar ideals. Even though “I am Joaquin” is told from Mexican-American perspective while “The First Seven Years” is told from Jewish-American perspective, similarities are found in both. They tell of the American Dream and of the two mentioned families’ roles and influences as a means of attaining that dream. The roles of the families in these works and each version of the American Dream are based on the same ideals, but involve different methods. “The First Seven Years” and “I am Joaquin” express the same versions of the American Dream in terms of what is wanted. The idea of both works is a better life for the future generations of the families. Both selections also make it clear that the people involved desire a relief of what has been done for many years. “I am Joaquin” tells of a work with “no end”. The people want an end to this tiring work they have done for years with no reward. Feld from “The First Seven Years” wants his daughter to marry someone who will make the shoemaker’s next generation one that is not making shoes. Feld thinks that if his daughter marries a shoemaker, his dream will be ruined because she will not have a better life than her mother did. Therefore, what is wanted in both selections is not only a better life, but a new life as well. Both works present different ways of realizing their similar versions of the American Dream. In “The First Seven Years” Feld makes it clear that education is the key to a better life rather than the hard labor he has gone through for many years. In the beginning of the story he wants his own daughter to go on to college because she shows...
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