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    The Consequences and Exemplification of the Broken American Dream

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    The American dream is an idea that revolves around success. And happiness regarding family, wealth, and possessions. This goal, although unspoken, is woven into society and viewed as an essential part of life. The importance of the consideration of the American dream. When following the paths of society has remained through the years, but has it become impossible to achieve this aspiration?

    Is the American dream broken? In the article “Promise of the American Dream is Broken”, by Travis Smiley and Cornel West, the rhetorical strategies parallelism, analogy, and syntax were effectively used to convey the message of the piece and express many American’s views on the so- called American dream.

    In the piece, parallelism was employed for emphasis and exemplification of personal experiences with this broken dream. In order to convince his reader and convey his message, the authors wrote, “Caught in vicious cycles of looking for nonexistent jobs…scraping change together for gas to go on interviews… having to swap food stamps for cash to keep the lights or gas on in the house.” In the article there is also a series of images that show the difficulties of seeking employment and basic needs.

    These connected images were used well in channeling the reader’s daily observation to magnify the difficulty of achieving the American Dream. By demonstrating the truthful and emotional moments that people don’t generally acknowledge, the reader senses sadness about what is happening within the nation: that the American dream is missing in most people’s lives. The proposal of the American dream being broken was supported by this evidence, which was arranged in a way that emphasized Smiley and West’s message.

    “Today’s staggering unemployment… It is the illegitimate offspring of a long abided system… The cancer of greed has spread throughout the body of Americans and surgery based on pre-recession strategies won’t cure the disease.” Here is one example of the authors using the rhetorical strategy of analogy.

    The way that they compare unemployment to cancer creates a sensitive and negative mood that influences the reader’s point of view. The word cancer reinforces the reader’s bad impression of these harmful topics; the strong sense of negativity that the word provokes convinces the reader to believe there is a major issue within society. The effectiveness of this strategy comes from it’s ability to offer clarity to the reader in a way that also persuades them, which is exactly why the authors used it here.

    In order to set a confident and certain tone, Smiley and West uncompromisingly utilize short sentence length to convey their ideas and conclude with a strong voice: “That dream has been broken for youths and adults all over the country.” A simple statement was presented to read at the end; it creates a firm tone that stands out, telling the reader that the future for the current and future generation has been damaged.

    For the purpose of persuasion, the authors end with a call to the audience for the reconstruction of the American dream, “It’s time to resuscitate the American dream.” By doing so, these two sentences help the authors stabilize and conclude their position on the national issues and call on the ambition of America to take action.

    Given these points, the consequences of a broken dream were presented in visual evidence, America’s greed was analogized, a strong tone was implemented, and a call to action were presented to the reader. The authors have portrays their message and made the point that resuscitation of the American dream is important. The rhetorical strategies engaged throughout the article express this purpose with efficiency.

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    The Consequences and Exemplification of the Broken American Dream. (2022, Dec 09). Retrieved from https://artscolumbia.org/the-consequences-and-exemplification-of-the-broken-american-dream/

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