The American Dream Exposed In The Lesson By Toni Cade Bambara

1258 words - 5 pages

Money constitutes the American Dream, because in America, to be successful in life means being wealthy. We live in an industrialized nation, in which money controls our very own existence. The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara establishes an argument about society’s injustice that entails financial opportunities by revealing the differences in living conditions between upper class and lower class. Another important point Stephen Cruz, a successful business person and a Professor at the University of Wisconsin at Platteville, makes in his speech is that the American Dream is getting progressively ambiguous, because the vision of success is being controlled by power and fear which only benefit 1 percent of Americans. For most people, the American Dream is to be financially stable to the point of content; however, realistically the accomplishment of the American Dream is often obstructed by society’s limitations and influences from higher power.
Although we live in a democratic nation, many job opportunities are offered mostly based on race, nationality, and social class. The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara illustrates how the society limits lower class citizens, mostly African Americans in New York, from career prosperity. The undemocratic economy system in America positions the values of money and limits career opportunity based on social class difference. Bambara demonstrates the harsh realization of reality for the financially unfortunate kids after they went to “F.A.O. Schwarz”, an expensive toy store in New York. Miss Moore took the children on a field trip to Fifth Avenue to show them the important economic issues many Americans currently faced. Miss Moore’s effort is to teach the children about how much things cost, how much their parents make, how much rent costs, and how money is divided up unequally in the United States (Bambara 266). Miss Moore succeeded in her purpose to make her students recognize the unfair advantages that upper class citizens have and are habitually taking them for granted. While Sugar react her point of view by giving her understanding to the wasteful materialistic side of the riches, Sylvia became determined at the end of the story to not let anybody beat her at the opportunity of life and living conditions any longer (Bambara 271). The meaningful demonstration to the toy store creates awareness for troublesome and ignorant kids like Sugar and Sylvia to take the economic situation seriously.
It is almost impossible for someone from a lower income condition to have a shot at pursuing the American dream. Being successful to the extent of leisure and individual satisfaction is the ideal classification of the American Dream. How can citizens fulfill their dream when society provides distinctive differences in options and opportunities for individuals to pursue their happiness? How can the American dream which is being wealthy be achieved when our society practice inequality base on social...

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