The American Dream

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The American Dream

Lecture 4 notes for AMST-A 100 On January 23, 2014

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Lecture Note
Indiana University, Bloomington
Amst-A 100 - What Is America?

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These notes represent a detailed interpretation of the professor’s lecture. GradeBuddy is best used as a supplement to your own notes, not as a substitute. Lecture 3 Outline of Last Lecture I. Myth and Symbols Approach II. The Critical Approach a. Ideology III. The Melting Pot a. The myth IV. Critical Analysis Paper Outline of Current Lecture I. Review of Last Class II. The American Dream a. Income Inequality in the US III. Criticisms of the American Dream Current Lecture Review of last class (1/21): The idea that the US is a melting pot… • The melting pot is both a myth (powerful influence on the was people think and act) and an ideology (ideas about what society should look like) • The melting pot is an ambiguous symbol, so it can be interpreted in different ways (but cannot just mean anything to anyone) • The melting pot theory, like multiculturalism (preserves certain symbols of culture but still requires other areas of the US to assimilate), can be seen as a way of domesticating difference (multiple lines of difference in the US and claiming it as something that defines and is unique to the US, acknowledges that the US is a heterogeneous society) The American Dream • There is no singular American dream • They tend to focus on a tension between opportunity and exclusion AMST-­‐A100 1st Edition

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