The American Dream: Essay Analysis

Benjamin Franklin is amongst the most recognized historic stars in America. He is a typical example of what is referred to as a self-made man. A self-made man is an individual who maneuvers his way from unpromising circumstances, to achieve his goal. It is a person who does not come from a privileged background and yet manages to make his life a great success. This idea is closely connected to America’s dream. In this paper, we are going to discuss a book called” into the wild” and relate it with Frank’s theory. In the first paragraph, we are going to get some background information about the story “into wild”. In the second paragraph, we are going to relate to how Chris’ family adopted Franklin’s idea. In the next two paragraphs, we are going to discuss on how the main character (Chris), dropped the idea of Frank and adapted his own theory. We are then going to conclude with a brief paragraph, which will be summative of the whole paper.

Into the Wild, is a true story by Jon Krakauer. It talks of the cryptic death and life of a brilliant man called Christopher McCandless. He was unmistakably hardworking, “I’ve contracted work with many hitchhikers previously, the majority of them had no aspiration to work. Chris was dissimilar; He was the greatest hard worker I’ve ever come across.”Westerberg articulates this concerning Chris. However, his hard work is for the sake of his parents. Once he graduated from Emory University (1990) he offered all his money to charity. He then disappeared and left his personal identity and past. He seals all the loopholes that his parents and friends would use to find him and starts off for a journey to his own world. He drives into the wild and abandons his middle-class life. His family haunts him everywhere, but all in vain. Later, it is discovered that the young man died in the wild. Many see his death as a mysterious happening. Attempts have been made to explain the cause of his death, but none can suffice the curiosity. In The American dream, Frank was from an average life family. However, he maneuvered his way to victory. He ended up in the White House and became a role model for any people. He created the basis of self-made individuals.

Chris’ family embraced Franks’ idea of the self-made man. This is evident through their selfless act of taking Chris to school. Apparently, they had the notion that education would help in elevating Chris, from his middle-class lifestyle to a more prominent and successful lifestyle. This is a notion that many people around the globe have. In addition, they were very hardworking; no wonder they could afford to support their young boy throughout his school life. They molded him into an obedient boy, who was really hardworking. His hard work reflects the hard work of his parents. This is the ideal American dream. Apparently, they support Frank’s opinion of not settling with sufficiency. Frank regarded the people sharing in his class as “the middling people”. He tries by all means to avoid them. He chooses to walk with the lofty lot. He fails to support his people in some war against their enemies, and term them as “cringed at class warfare.” By taking Chris to school, his family had the belief that he would be associating with elites, rather than mingling with his middle-class counterparts, at home.

Chris was not for the idea of Frank, and the American dream. This is evident in many ways. To begin with, the two characters differ in their priorities in life. While Frank puts more emphasis on working hard to acquire wealth and a high social class, Chris does not value wealth or money. Wealth and money are the least of Chris’ needs. This is seen when Chris sells all his property, and give the money to charity. He walks into the wild, where he was sure that there would be no help from any person. On the other hand, Franklin was for the idea, “Mislay no
Time—be always committed to something beneficial.” To him, the act of Chris going into the wild would have been like losing precious time. To Chris, the most important thing was to be in harmony with himself, and God, no wonder he went into the wild.

Secondly, what demonstrates that Chris was absolutely not in support of Frank’s theory is how he related to people. Chris did not discriminate against people on the basis of their wealth as Frank did. As a matter of fact, Chris supported those who he thought needed some charity. He gave all he had to them, without any regrets. Frank, on the other hand, wanted to move from his middle-class status. Some writers refer to him as “the leather- apron” being. He calls his own people “the middling” people. He assumes “the appeal of a Tradesman, to fall filthy of the Quakers and their opponents correspondingly, like Individuals from whom no noble could be expected. By this Deception, to animate all the middling Persons, to cater for their own defense.” Franks’ life revolves around making money and wealth. He adored the rich, and no wonder he was always walking in the company of” elite,” and well to do people.

Frank’s idea is adopted by many, as the American Dream. Many people are in support of his idea. All over the world, people are applying it, in maneuvering form the middle-class levels to gaining high social standards. He has written many articles on how individuals can rise to greater heights in life. Those who do not agree with this idea are unlikely to maneuver into “a good” life. An example is Chris. Chris fails to work hard, towards a “good life”. He goes into the wild and losses his life there, in a very mysterious manner.


Krakauer, J.1996. Into The Wild. New York: Anchor Books.

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