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What It Means To Be An American Definition Essay On Success

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Essays: What Does Success Mean To Me?

What Does Success Mean To Me?

“Success”, something that everybody wants. But, what is success? Indeed, everybody has his own definition of the word. For some, success means having a lot of money, fame and power, but for some, success does not necessarily means having a lot of money.

As a student, “success” for me would be to become a laureate or to pass my exams with very good results and get a scholarship. Still, some students may thing that getting a scholarship is too hard and thus may consider that simply passing their exams is a success. In Form 5, i was aiming for 6 distinctions, instead, i got only 4. While most people would consider it as a rather good result, i was disappointed and considered it as a failure. For me success mean to reach our targeted goals. After passing my HSC exams, I would probably join a university where i would like to study psychology and economics.

Of course, success does not stop at academic level. Obviously after finishing school I would join a firm where i will start a career. Here again, everybody has their own definition of a successful career. A good example of a successful career for me would be that of Bill Gates. My childhood dream job was to army. I wanted to become a soldier and serve my country. But with time, i have realized that soldier was not a job made for me. For me being successful in a career means not only to earn a lot of money but also to earn higher status, gain more power and allies.

I would consider myself to be successful in my career only when I will reach the top of it. most people like to think that money is not important, “what is more important is to have a nice family and a good social life” they say. I believe money is very important, it is a mean to fulfill our dreams and since we like to dream big, it is obvious that we will need a lot of money to fulfill our dreams. I believe that one should always seek to grab opportunities and grow stronger. When it comes to having a decent family life, why should we have to choose between power, a lot of money and our family? Can’t we have both? Some people might think that one will not have enough time to spend with his family when working hard to achieve success in his career. Well, I believe that life starts once you have achieve success in your career. Once you have reached the top, you will have all the time you want to spend with your family.

Indeed, it is important to spend a lot of time with one’s family to be successful in his family life. Without that, one’s life is a failure. Family is very important in a person’s life. When we take a look around us today, we see more and more broken families. People are living under the same roof as strangers. There is no communication among the family members. I would have such a family, i would consider my life as a failure. Even if i had all the money in the world, it would be useless if I had nobody to share with. After all, who on his deathbed ever said “wish i had spend more time in the office and less with my family”. For me, having a successful family means having a wife i can trust and rely on, having children whom I can be proud of. I do not expect my children to be genius or to have special abilities. All i want is a child who will respect me and who will make me say proudly “that’s my child”. Of course, I do not expect my family to be perfect. There will be hard times, but what is more important is that we stay united. Having a decent family life will also give you more respect in the society and hence more success.

Indeed, once cannot have a happy life if nobody in the society likes him. To know whether one is successful or not in the society, one should ask himself, “What difference would it make if I was not here?” There is not many ways to gain respect in the society. If you give respect, you get respect. Here again, I believe that having a successful career will help. For me being successful in a society is when children look at you and say “When I grow up, I want to be like this man”

Of course, today I am a still a young seventeen years old student. I have all my life to life. I hope that in he future my vision of success will be different, but for the time being, this is what “Success” means to me.

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What It Means to be an Amaerican Essay - Culture

What It Means to be an Amaerican Essay

What it means to be an American
People today have mimicked their lives after what they are seeing celebrities do. TV and movies can also help influence people they can inspire someone to become a better person, take action and unite people to come together. Through popular music, art, film, and literature, we can discern that American identity is influenced by what we see on TV, movies, art work and, music.
The Statue of Liberty is famous for its beauty and elegant structure. When immigrants first arrived in America the first thing they saw was lady liberty standing in the middle of Ellis Island holding her arm up high. When you laid you eyes upon lady liberties beauty you felt a sense of freedom when you came to America. She wasn’t just a piece of art work given to us from the French she was a symbol of home and freedom for America. Felicita Gabaccia arrived here in America ninety years ago with her family hoping to start a new life. When she arrived at Ellis Island Felicita vividly remembers her father’s excitement when they arrived in New York My father was calling to all of the Italians, “Come over and see the statue! Come over and see the statue!” (Gabaccia ) Felicita spent 20 days traveling out at sea and had finally arrived to immigration station and was finally able to walk through “the golden door”(Gabaccia).
"The New Colossus" by Emma Lazarus is the poem at the bottom of the statue of liberty. "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free”(lazarus). These are a few words from Lazarus poem. This poem was out on the statue because the two represented the same meaning of freedom for Americans.
Modern Family is a Television show about an American family. It shows a family going.


. middle of paper.


. Ellis Island 11 Mar. 2010: 3. 19 May 2010.
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Keith, Toby. Courtesy of the Red, White, & Blue. 2001. CMT Web. 19 May 2010.
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Auguste, Frederic Auguste Bartholdi Auguste. the statue of liberty. October 28, 1886. lady liberty
green statue. america, Ellis island.


Lazarus, Emma. the new colossus. 1883. Ellis island, new york city. the new colossus By Emma
Lazarus. n. pag. Print.

King, Martin Luther. "I Have a Dream." Lincoln Memorial Washington D.C. 28 Aug. 1963. Speech.


Hancock, John Lee, dir. The Blind Side. Quinton Aaron, Sandra Bullock. Warner Bros, 1. Film.

Wood, Grant. American Gothic. 1930. Oil on beaverboard. Art Institute of Chicago.

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An American Tragedy Background

An American Tragedy Background

These notes were contributed by members of the GradeSaver community. We are thankful of their contributions and encourage you to make your own.

Written by Timothy Sexton

Theodore Dreiser ’s An American Tragedy was published the very same year as F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby . Both novels present a portrait of what it meant to be an American in the early part of the 20th century, but in reading one can be forgiven for supposing that each takes places in entirely different countries. While Gatsby’s story is certainly one that in which some rather questionable morality and an absence of any ethical standards pass through, ultimately Fitzgerald suggests that America is truly a land of opportunity for unsurpassed wealth and fulfillment of desire for anyone willing to work hard enough (and sacrifice any qualms they may have about the kind of work that must be done) in order to get. Dreiser, by contrast, more than merely suggests that the American Dream is inescapably rigged against the overwhelming majority of those seeking to make it real.

Another element that joins these two starkly different visions of American in the first quarter of the 1900s is the introduction of reality into their fictional universes. A few characters in The Great Gatsby are based—to various levels—on actual people whom Fitzgerald either knew or knew about. That connection the world outside the Jazz Age partying at Gatsby’s mansion is tenuous at best. By contrast, An American Tragedy is very firmly grounded in the real life murder trial of Chester Gillette. Gillette was found guilty of murdering his pregnant girlfriend under murky circumstances in which her death could actually have been merely an accidental drowning just like Dreiser’s protagonist Clyde Griffiths is found guilty of murdering his pregnant girlfriend while in a rowboat on a lake. Gillette was the son of itinerant Salvation Army soldiers…and so is Clyde. In fact, Clyde shares a number of similarities with Chester, but more important is the fact that the circumstances and motivations of Chester’s crime shared a similarity with a number of others which do not make into Dreiser’s version so neat and tidily.

Those shared circumstances are social and psychological: murders committed by ambitious young men seeking to make the American Dream become reality not by killing human beings, but by clearing away intrusive obstructions on their path to enjoying unsurpassed wealth. The title of Dreiser’s epic novel hints that most of those possessing only the ambition to fulfill the American Dream will ultimately experience only a certain definitive kind of American tragedy.

The forces that forged the kind of unimaginably inequitable gap between the haves and the have-nots around the turn of the 20th century would—thanks to a series of wars, the Great Depression and various pushes for equal rights—not be experienced again until the turn of the 21st century. Those forces created an ideological certainty and acceptance as normal that Dreiser insists acts upon those like Clyde Griffiths who are essentially brainwashed into launching a pursuit of betterment in a race that has already been run and won without their even being aware of it.

Dreiser was a firm believer in the power of social welfare to assist those in need because it helped—in however minute a fashion—to narrow the gap of iniquitous inequity in which those who least needed assistance seemed to be the ones who received it with the least effort. Dreiser himself was tremendously assisted in the writing of An American Tragedy by virtue of a bank account of $4,000 upon which he could draw throughout the long process of composition. The money was the result of an advance from his publisher Horace Liveright and was offered at a time when advances from publishers to their authors was nearly unheard-of.

Upon publication, An American Tragedy was almost immediately banned in Boston. Eventually, the novel would—as seems to always be the result of these ill-advised decisions—become a far greater commercial success as a result of the controversy of its being banned than it probably would have had it not become the object 0f moralmongering suppression.

An American Tragedy was twice adapted into a motion picture, the first in a pre-code version under its original title. More memorable was the second adaptation retitled A Place in the Sun which starred an Oscar-nominated Montgomery Clift as the renamed George Eastman, Shelley Winters as his shrewish pregnant co-worker and Elizabeth Taylor as the personification the American Dream. George Stevens won an Oscar for direction, but the film—which retained all of the corrosive social commentary of Dreiser’s novel behind its far more attractive façade—managed to lose out for Best Picture during the height of the Hollywood communist witch hunt to the far more politically conservative An American in Paris. In retrospect, it was too bad that Stevens did not decide to retain the original title as then there would have been a split of the Best Director/Best Picture winners between two different movies the words “An American” in their titles.

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What it means to be an American Essay - 483 Words

What it means to be an American


What it means to be an American?

I feel like generations before had a different definition of what it means to be an American. I feel like our grandparents and great-grandparents; whom were mostly immigrates set out to make a better life for generations following. They emphasized on working hard, owning their own homes, and building big families. There was a strong sense of community, and respect. Even though the core idea hasn’t changes much. Now, I feel as if America has turned into a country of arrogance, intolerance, and greed. Although, difference issues and situations have been worked through, there is still much work to be done. The “founding fathers” of this country, had a different Idea of what it took to be an American. Through slave labor, prejudice, and an unjust government, things went bad quickly. Remnants of all of that still exist today. I think being an American should be about helping one another. Doing whatever it takes to make sure that EVERYONE’s rights are kept. For some reason, I don’t think this will ever come to be, when we live in a world where people fear what they don’t understand. Instead of a “live and let live” country, we have a government that constantly tries to dictate what we should do, because they feel they know what’s best. If everyone could focus on their version of the American Dream, and stop creating obstacles for others, I believe this country would be in a better place. The same things all of us want are Freedom, Equality, and a just government. But will that every come to be. Only time will tell. Because, I have been fortunate enough to live in so many places in the U.S. I have developed my own “American Dream”. One where everything that I desire, can be mine. Hard work, determination, respect for others, and faith are all I need. So what it means to me to be an American, is to never give up hope. Never stop fighting for what you believe in. It’s that fight, that hope that has brought us through so much. Through.

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