What is more, you may mention in essay on income inequality and happiness that the distribution of any products, services, and social benefits is determined by the position in the social hierarchy, material base, and so on.
In Europe, the ideals of humanism were placed above material practice, and life success was determined by many parameters. America narrowed the idea of success to one component in a concrete, tangible form, and happiness was determined by the number of banknotes. The dream of success was embodied, as Tocqueville said, in the romance of figures which have an irresistible charm. The cult of wealth has become almost religious. It was a special form of idealism, the source of the incredible American Dream. Tocqueville described it as follows: there is something supernatural, mystical in the incredible ability of Americans to acquire.
Writing the American Dream paper, you can refer to the words of one more famous personality. 100 years after Tocqueville, President Calvin Coolidge, in his inaugural speech, said that America is a country of idealists, a country of dreamers where any idea, every dream is worthy of respect if it leads to greater wealth. Centuries of painful thoughts of humanity about the meaning of life were left behind.
People were used to believe that America is the freest country in the world because every shoemaker could become a millionaire here. But, in reality, it is not entirely true. If all become millionaires, who will be the “millionaire”? A “million” is a symbolic concept. It means the sum of money which is unattainable for most citizens. Each person can’t have more than most people. This contradicts common sense. But the dream has nothing to do with common sense. A dream is an ideal, the ultimate goal of which all people are aiming. The person can achieve it only if his or her actions confirm the possibility of further development, whether it is about social, political or cultural progress. In the Old World, there was such a concept of “equal opportunities” as social mobility. It meant equality of opportunities in the distribution of wealth, and the opportunity to compete on equal terms.
But these ideals are not found in modern society. In the hierarchy of contemporary society, there is no place for the dream of equality. A person can’t stand above material practice, but, on the contrary, is related to inequality. The imbalance of opportunities was clearly manifested, especially in the economic sphere, which was described in great detail in Tocqueville’s work.
Unlike other countries of the world that were built on the traditions and experience of the past, America created its history anew. It was a society of immigrants. It evolved in the process of merging and interpenetration of polar ideas, numerous cultures and moral values. America fused the contradictions into a single whole, combined the pragmatism and the religious ideas of the Enlightenment. A special American way of life different from the European one was created.
As Friedrich Engels wrote, America created its own traditions on the basis of concrete circumstances, and circumstances formed the necessary new forms of relations.
In new forms of relations, extremes merged in unusual symbiosis that Europeans could not decipher. Tell about the following paradox in American Dream research paper: religiosity, which is irrational in its essence, coexisted with a rational, materialistic worldview; respect for others – with aggressiveness; responsiveness and desire to help – with indifference to another’s destiny; honest work and respect for the law – with widespread crime; faith in fair play, the absence of exploitation, rudeness and cruelty.
Contrasts arose in the atmosphere of unprecedented freedoms. The possibility of legal action protected people from humiliation, mass arrests, torture. In Europe, the idea of “due justice” was supported by public hopes for social improvement. “The road to success” proclaimed the ideology of the Enlightenment. The reality proved to be quite different.
The first counteraction was a reaction of the society to the new state of things. It was represented by the natural increase in demand for freedom, which led to the growth of the movement for freedom. The freedom of individual entrepreneurship has led to the fact that people were able to achieve success in this way.
The second counteraction came from the political elites. They tried to impose their own ideas on the economy, and the poor were left to fight their poverty. The revolutionary experience of the United States for the development of the economy resulted in the creation of a very rich and influential class of landowners.
The development of the economy has resulted in the accumulation of material wealth, and the middle class acquired a number of properties. The lower class included 1.5 million people, and the upper class – 5 million. The distribution of wealth between the middle class and other elements of the social structure of society was less significant than the level of material comfort which each member was in the grip of, i.e. the level of material comfort which varies significantly for different groups of households.