American Dream

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OVERCOMING OBSTACLES OF THE AMERICAN DREAM In the literatures we have read this semester all of the characters have a dream that consists of a plan and multiple goals that sum up to the American Dream, however, there have been obstacles that sometimes hinder these American dreams. These obstacles range from internal conflict to society itself. The question is if it is possible for these characters to struggle with obstacles and overcome them to reach their dream? In “Step Children of a Nation” Isabel Gonzalez explains how the probabilities for Mexican-Americans in America during the mid 20th century for achieving the American Dream were very slim due to the obstacles that were presented by society (Gonzalez 162). Pedro Pietri details in the “Puerto Rican Obituary” the personal struggles endured by five Puerto Ricans in New York while attempting to achieve the American Dream (Pietri 212). We have no choice but to accept the standard of the United States and act in accordance with the society expectations as we see Ysreal do in Junot Diaz’ “No Face” (Diaz 417). Each character in these texts has the opportunity of success and only those who are willing to make a persistent and consistent effort will be able to achieve their dream despite their own personal struggles and the obstacles presented by society. Even though there are many obstacles to achieving this dream, it isn’t impossible for it to become a reality. The Mexican-Americans in Step Children of a nation lacked the ambition needed to achieve the American Dream. The most difficult obstacles to overcome are those presented by society. Isabel Gonzalez states what life was like for Mexican Americans trying to achieve the American Dream in the mid 20th century under poor living conditions and economic exploitation. These characters acculturated to the American lifestyle and the non citizens had the desire to become citizens. In fact they supported World War II (Leal) and Gonzalez noted that:
It is a well



Cited: Aguilar, Mario E. From Immigrant Ousiders to Indigenous Tribal - National Identities. Web. 09 June 2011. Alford, William. Junot Diaz 's Drown -- Sex, Race and Power. 10 Feb 2005. Web. 08 June 2011. Brook, Elizabeth. Nuyroican Newness. 2010 11 May. Web. 08 June 2011. Diaz, Junot. "No Face." Herencia: The Anthology of Hispanic Literature of the United States. Ed. Nicolas Kanellos. New York: Oxford Press, 2002. 417-420. Print. Gonzalez, Isabel. "Step Children of a Nation." Herencia: The Anthology of Hispanic Literature of the United States. Ed. Nicolas Kanellos. New York: Oxford Press, 2002. 162-170. Print. Leal, David A. "American Public Opinion." October 2005. webspace.utexas.edu. Web. 08 June 2011. Monthly Review Foundation. Monthly Review: Puerto Rican Obituary. 01 June 2004. Web. 08 June 2011. Pietri, Pedro. "Puerto Rican Obituary." Herencia: The Anthology of Hispanic Literature of the United States. Ed. Nicolas Kanellos. New York: Oxford Press, 2002. 212-220. Print.

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