The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream
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The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream: Volume 2 explores the social, economic, and cultural aspects of the American Dream in both theory and reality in the twenty-first century. This collection of essays brings together leading scholars from a range of fields to further develop the themes and issues explored in the first volume.
The concept of the American Dream, first expounded by James Truslow Adams in The Epic of America in 1931, is at once both ubiquitous and difficult to define. The term perfectly captures the hopes of freedom, opportunity and upward social mobility invested in the nation. However, the American Dream appears increasingly illusory in the face of widening inequality and apparent lack of opportunity, particularly for the poor and ethnic, or otherwise marginalized, minorities in the United States. As such, an understanding of the American Dream through both theoretical analyses and empirical studies, whether qualitative or quantitative, is crucial to understanding contemporary America.
Like the first volume of The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream, this collection will be of great interest to students and researchers in a range of fields in the humanities and social sciences.
Table of Contents
- Introduction: Theorizing the American Dream
- In Pursuit of the Elusive American Dream: Black Woman Professionals
- Markets, Finance, Whiteness, and the American Dream
- Earning Rent with Your Talent: American Inequality Rests on the Power to Define, Transfer and Institutionalize Talent
- From American Dream to Nordic Realities?
- Equality, Opportunity, and the American Dream
- What "American" dream? Contemporary reflections
- Achieving the American Dream: How Middle Class Blacks Socialize Their Children to Make It to the Top
- What (American) Dreams are made of: Disney’s Fairy Tale Narratives
- How Free-Market Family Policy Crushed the American Dream
- A Twenty-First Century African Immigrant View of the American Dream’s Challenges and Opportunities
- The Boys from Little Mexico Redux: Dreaming the Immigrant Dream
- Incorporation and Disruption: What Fictional Narratives Can Tell Us About the Realities of the American Dream
- The American Dream and Muslim Americans: (Im)Possibilities and Realities of Pursuing the Dream
- Gay Neighborhoods: Reimagining the Traditional Conception of the American Dream
- The American Dream: Rhetoric of Opportunity and Reality of Exclusion
- "Good Living" and Immigrants in the Literature of Aleksandar Hemon: Towards the Humble Dream
- A Dream Deferred: Professional Projects as Racial Projects in US Medicine
- Status Maintenance, Mobility, and the Persistence of Class Barriers to Achieving the American Dream
Robert C. Hauhart and Mitja Sardoč
Part I: Economic Success and Upward Economic Mobility and the American Dream
Tsedale M. Melaku
Jonathan J.B. Mijs
Ingrid Christensen, John Erik Fossum and Bent-Sofus Tranøy
Mitja Sardoč and Vladimir Prebilič
Melanie E L Bush
Part II: Contemporary Issues in American Dream Studies
Part III: Migration and the Immigrant American Dream
Enock Ariga Marindi and Robert C. Hauhart
Part IV: Marginalized Americans and the American Dream
Elda María Román
Joan Maya Mazelis
Part V: The American Dream Goes Global?
Part VI: Sustainability and the American Dream
LaTonya J. Trotter
Robert C. Hauhart
Robert C. Hauhart is a Professor in the Department of Society and Social Justice at Saint Martin’s University, USA, where he teaches courses in sociology, criminology, social justice, law, and literature. His research focuses on the concept of the American Dream in twentieth and twenty-first century sociology, as well as research and writiing on multiple themes, including the American Dream, in American literature. In 2019 he was a recipient of a Fulbright Scholar Award to teach and research the American Dream at the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ZRC SAZU) in Ljubljana, where he maintains an association as a visiting research fellow. He is the author of several books, including The Lonely Quest: Constructing the Self in the Twenty-First Century United States (Routledge, 2018) and Seeking the American Dream: A Sociological Inquiry (Palgrave Macmillan 2016), which was nominated for the Pacific Sociological Association’s Distinguished Scholarship Award in 2017. He is also co-editor of American Writers in Exile (Salem Press 2015); Social Justice in American Literature (Salem Press 2017); European Writers in Exile (Lexington Books 2018); Connections and Influences Between the Russian and American Short Story (Lexington Books 2021); The Routledge Handbook of the American Dream: Volume 1 (Routledge, 2021), and Significant Food in American Literature (University of Georgia Press, forthcoming). He is the co-author (with Jon Grahe, Pacific Lutheran University, of Designing and Teachiing Undergraduate Capstone Courses (Jossey-Bass/Wiley 2015)
Mitja Sardoc is Senior Research Associate at the Educational Research Institute in Ljubljana, Slovenia, where he is a member of the Educational Research program. His research interests include citizenship education, patriotism, multiculturalism, toleration, radicalization and violent extremism, talents and distributive justice, and equality of opportunity. He is editor of numerous books including, most recently, Handbook of Patriotism (Springer 2020), The Impacts of Neoliberal Discourse and Language in Education: Critical Perspectives on a Rhetoric of Equality, Well-Being, and Justice (Routledge, 2021), The Palgrave Handbook of Toleration (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021), Making Sense of Radicalization and Violent Extremism: Interviews and Conversations (Routledge, 2022), and Talents and Distributive Justice (Routledge, 2022). He is also co-editor of The Routledge Handbook of the American Dream: Volume 1 (2021) and Managing Editor of the Theory and Research in Education journal.
The Routledge Handbook on the American Dream provides an excellent overview on the promises and pitfalls of one of the world's most powerful ideas and ideologies. A must-read for everyone interested in understanding the history and present of the United States.
Johannes Drerup, Professor of Education, Technical University of Dortmund, Germany
There are few people in our globalized 21st century who have not heard of the American Dream. Fewer, however, have taken the opportunity to examine its meaning and fewer still its implications. The two volumes of Hauhart and Sardoč’s edited collection offer a comprehensive overview of what is an endlessly fascinating topic. Whether the reader is a historian, a professional in the social sciences or humanities, or simply a student inquiring into the American Dream, there is nowhere better to begin or continue one’s interest in the United States and its dominant cultural mythos than here.
Oto Luthar, Director of the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Slovenia