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Analyze how realistic this rags-to-riches story is in today's America - Essay Example

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Name Professor Module Date Analyzing the Rags-to-Riches Myth in Today's America Many Americans like to imagine that the United States is a country that provides numerous opportunities for all people who migrate there. Even the citizens of other nations around the world have believed this myth as a result of the way America is depicted in all elements of the mass media…
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Analyze how realistic this rags-to-riches story is in today's America

Download file to see previous pages... In actuality, poor people from various ethnic backgrounds have more chance of realizing financial independence in different European nations than in the United States. The myth of American opportunity has probably persisted due to the chances that existed for motivated immigrants in past centuries. In the 19th century, America was obviously a better option for slum dwellers in England and Continental Europe. The chances that individuals from these nations found in America were so different from those they were exposed to in their motherlands that they began to view America as a land akin to paradise. Horatio Alger’s book, ‘Ragged Dick’ mirrors this enthusiasm about the chances given by America to the disenfranchised. In ‘Ragged Dick’, the hero lives in New York City and starts out in a deprived and pitiable state, but, due to hard work and dedication, ends up being educated and respected by society. The latter part of the 19th century was a time of change and great progress in American History. Moreover, it was also a time of falsehood. The reality is that corruptive practices, at this time, were more accepted in today’s America. ...
Gangs randomly attacked successful business men and forced them to pay ‘protection fees’ in order to keep operating. Politicians were corrupt and did not have the current organizations that check excesses to curtail their crooked activities. In Horatio Alger’s book, Dick is a dedicated and punctilious person who takes advantage of the opportunities that come his way (Alger 247). Alger shows how his main character gains an opportunity to improve his chances of overcoming poverty when he is rewarded for being of assistance to the child of a rich man. This, in itself, presents a contradiction in what Alger believed about the American society’s fairness. For instance, if Dick had been of African American ancestry, it is unlikely that he would have been given the chance to improve his life even if he had saved fifty sons of rich men. Dick was privileged in this particular circumstance, even though he was poor, because he was from the accepted race. In today’s world, people from all ethnic backgrounds do not have equal opportunity to improve their lives in spite of what is constantly asserted by the media. The fact that America has become more technologically advanced and is also experiencing a recession merely makes things harder for people or migrants who have little in the way of material goods to raise themselves economically. Not all Americans are well-educated. This means that there will be a lot of competition for the existing blue-collar jobs. In such cases, it is likely that ethnic minorities will be disadvantaged as those that are able to bribe for the jobs or belong to the predominant race are given the existing opportunities. Where white-collar jobs are concerned, sex, race, education and good resumes are ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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