Friday, March 16, 2018

American Dream Literature - American Ideals

Huck Finn, illustration by E.W. Kemble from the 1885 edition
of Mark Twain's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
The concept of the American Dream has been used in popular discourse, and scholars have traced its use in American literature ranging from the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, to Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884), Willa Cather's My Ántonia, F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby (1925), Theodore Dreiser's An American Tragedy (1925) and Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon (1977). Other writers who used the American Dream theme include Hunter S. Thompson, Edward Albee, John Steinbeck, Langston Hughes, and Giannina Braschi. The American Dream is also discussed in Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman as the play's protagonist, Willy, is on a quest for the American Dream.

As Huang shows, the American Dream is a recurring theme in the fiction of Asian Americans.