1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream Volume 1

Edited By Robert C. Hauhart, Mitja Sardoč Copyright 2022
    376 Pages
    by Routledge

    316 Pages
    by Routledge

    What do we mean by the American Dream? Can we define it? Or does any discussion of the phrase end inconclusively, the solid turned liquid – like ice melting? Do we know whether the American Dream motivates and inspires or, alternately, obscures and deceives? The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream offers distinctive, authoritative, original essays by well-known scholars that address the social, economic, historical, philosophic, legal, and cultural dimensions of the American Dream for the twenty-first century. The American Dream, first discussed and defined in print by James Truslow Adams' The Epic of America (1931), has become nearly synonymous with being American. Adams’ definition, although known to scholars, is often lost in our ubiquitous use of the term. When used today, the iconic phrase seems to encapsulate every fashion, fad, trend, association, or image the user identifies with the United States or American life. The American Dream’s ubiquity, though, argues eloquently for a deeper under-standing of its heritage, its implications, and its impact—to be found in this first research handbook ever published on the topic.




    Introduction: What is the American Dream?

    Robert C. Hauhart

    Mitja Sardoč

    Economic Success and Upward Economic Mobility and the American Dream

    Racial Capitalism and (Im)Mobility: Asian Americans in the Contemporary Labor Market

    Pawan Dhingra

    Gendered Street Capitalism and the Violence of the American Dream

    Susan Dewey

    The Mirage of Meritocracy and the Morality of Grace

    Victor Tan Chen

    Hegemony and Interpellation: The Ideological Functions of the American Dream

    Cyril Ghosh

    Paradise for Whom? Rural Inequality and the Elusive American Dream

    Jennifer Sherman

    Is the Nordic Model more compatible with the American Dream than present-day United States?

    John Erik Fossum

    Contemporary Issues in American Dream Studies

    The Random Factor: Chance, Luck, and the American Dream

    Mark R. Rank

    The Feminist American Dream

    Alison Dahl Crossley

    Migration and the Immigrant American Dream

    Migration and the American Dream

    Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia

    Post-1965 Immigrants, African Americans and the Limits of the American Dream

    Milton Vickerman

    Crime and the American Dream in a Nation of Immigrants

    Steven F. Messner and Richard Rosenfeld

    Marginalized Americans and the American Dream

    Poor But Still Dreaming

    Francesco Duina

    The American Dream, Latinx and the US Mass Media in the 21st Century

    Clara E. Rodriguez

    Queer Youth and the American Dream

    Mary Robertson

    The American Dream Goes Global?

    Exporting the American Dream: Global Implications

    Robert C. Hauhart

    The Chinese Dream, the Wuhan Nightmare, and COVID-19 Conspiracy Theory

    Michael A. Peters

    Why Is There No European Dream?

    Blaz Kosovel

    Sustainability and the American Dream

    Using Cargo Cult Movements to Explain the Persistent Appeal of the American Dream

    Robert C. Hauhart

    Contributor Bios



    Robert C. Hauhart, Ph.D., J.D., is a professor in the Department of Society and Social Justice at Saint Martin’s University, Lacey, WA (USA). He is the author or co-editor of seven books and numerous published papers in sociology, literature, and education journals. In sociology, Professor Hauhart is a recognized scholar of the American Dream. His most recent books include The Lonely Quest: Constructing the Self in the Twenty-First Century United States (Routledge 2018) and Seeking the American Dream: A Sociological Inquiry (2016), nominated for the Pacific Sociological Association’s Distinguished Scholarship Award in 2017. In 2019 Professor Hauhart was a recipient of a Fulbright Scholar Award to teach and research the American Dream at the Postgraduate School and Research Centre of the Slovenian Institute of Sciences and Arts in Ljubljana. In literature, Professor Hauhart is a student of twentieth century American literature and, in particular, American Dream themes in American literature. He is the co-editor, with Jeff Birkenstein, of four volumes: American Writers in Exile (2015); Social Justice in American Literature (2017); European Writers in Exile (2018); and Dogs and Ladies: Connections and Influence in the Russian and American Short Story (In Press). In education, Professor Hauhart is the co-author, with Jon Grahe, Pacific Lutheran University, of Designing and Teaching the Undergraduate Capstone Course (2015).

    Mitja Sardoč (PhD) is senior research associate at the Educational Research Institute in Ljubljana (Slovenia) where he is member of the ‘Educational Research’ program. His research interests and expertise include philosophy of education, political philosophy and education policy. He is author of scholarly articles and editor of a number of journal special issues on citizenship education, multiculturalism, toleration, equality of opportunity, radicalization and violent extremism, patriotism,the American Dream, neoliberalism and education, talents and distributive justice. He is Managing Editor of Theory and Research in Education and member of the editorial board of the CEPS Journal and Postdigital Science and Education. Between September and December 2019, he was a visiting fellow at the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies at the European University Institute in Florence (Italy). He is Editor-in-Chief of The Handbook of Patriotism and editor of The Impacts of Neoliberal Discourse and Language in Education to be published by Routledge (in 2021).