Throughout the history of America, there have been a countless number of incredible Americans. Through American beliefs, ideals, and governing these people have changed the world for the better. Things like the internet, airplanes, nuclear power, etc., would not exist if it was not for America (Dan).  To each of the amazing Americans who changed the face of the world the American dream has meant something a little different. To some the difference in their American dream was minute. However, for many, the difference was undoubtedly huge. Sherman Alexie, who wrote Superman and Me, and is now a successful author and Dorothy Vaughan, an incredibly talented African American mathematician, Dorothy was the star of Hidden Figures, and helped send America to space, no doubt had very different definitions of the American dream.

However, there is one linking factor between all of these great Americans and that’s their hard working, “never give up”  attitudes. Every single incredibly successful and influential American has one thing in common, and that’s their ability to put in great amounts of hard work. Without his hard work and great amount of reading Sherman Alexie might have just ended up another minimum wage American nobody (Alexie). Dorothy Vaughan had to prove everyday that she was worthy of keeping her job at NACA (now modern day NASA). Dorothy often put in 18-hour workdays in order to stay caught up and prove she was just as worthy as her white counterparts (Shetterly).

The beauty of the American dream, is that it does not matter if you’re a poor Indian from a reservation in middle of nowhere Washington (Alexie). It does not even matter if you’re a brilliant African American female mathematician trying to succeed in a field that is dominated by white males during the Civil Rights Era (Shetterly). If you can get down, roll up your sleeves, ignore those telling you “you’re not good enough” or “your kind isn’t welcome here”, You will succeed.

The opportunities offered in America will take you farther than you can imagine. Sure, if you’re born into a rich, successful family, will life be easier for you? Absolutely. However, even if you don’t have a family and are born on the streets. If you can get your hands a little dirty and grit your teeth, then you can be anyone you want to be, and do anything you want to do. That is the American Dream.


Works Cited

Dan, Major. “10 Great American Achievements.” History and Headlines. History and

               Headlines, n.d. Web. 02 Oct. 2017.


Alexie, Sherman. “Superman and Me.” LA Times. La Times, 1998. Web. 3 Oct. 2017                                                                                                                                           

Women Who Helped Win the Space Race. London: William Morrow, an Imprint of

              HarperCollins, 2017. Print.

Image credit: NASA

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October 6, 2017 12:13 pm

I really liked your writing, some people that I knew gave up on achieving something like becoming first chair in band or orchestra because they didn’t make it the first time. Then they practice less and less until they eventually just quit, and they could have easily gotten it if they worked harder. It is by no means easy though, It doesn’t come naturally to a lot of people so they have to work hard on learning to work hard (which is kind of a paradox.) Sometimes I think people have an attitude of always deserving better than what they have, but you do need to do something to get what you want. Not just sit there and hope it happens. Like you said, the people who don’t give are much more likely to grow up to become great Americans like the ones that you named.

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