Major Themes in American Literature

Topics: BusinessHard Work

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Last updated: April 22, 2019

The American Dream
The ideal that every US citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative

Loss of Innocence
It is usually thought of as an experience or period in a child’s life that widens their awareness of evil, pain or suffering in the world around them.

Coming of Age
A young person’s transition from being a child to being an adult

Relationship with Nature
1. Nature as Teacher: nature is viewed as a positive, life giving force.2. Cold, Impersonal World: nature can be completely indifferent to what happens to us.

Relationship with Society
1. Crime and Punishment: when individuals break laws, commit crimes, and are punished.2.

Oppression: Individuals violate the laws of society, or society infringes upon the rights of the individual. 3. War: the right to rebellion. 4. Influence: Society molds and creates a person’s ideals and morals through media, culture, and current events.

Relationship with Science
Technology and advancement in the world as a catalyst for change.

Alienation and Isolation
The experience and consequences of being isolated from a group or an activity to which one should belong, or in which one should be involved.

Survival of the Fittest
A justification for behavior that undermines moral standards by letting the interpretation of strength determine justice to the detriment of the weak.

Disillusionment
The feeling of disappointment resulting from the discovery that something is not as good as one believed it to be.

Rebellion and protest
Process of resisting authority, control, or convention.

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