Helen Keller's Quote on Dreams: Critical Analysis

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A dream. Something all of us have experienced in our lives. Something we have all taken time out of our day to imagine some source of happiness we wish to see projected in our lives and into our world. Dreams are known to represent desires, thoughts, wish fulfillment, and motivations and bring repressed wishes and deepest desires to the surface of thought. Author Helen Keller once said ‘“the most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight, but no vision”. Being able to see clearly but not having the ability to dream a way forward to enhance your life or the life of others is what Helen Keller was talking about with this quote. As humans we have the capacity to transform lives, being an essential part for dreaming.

Black Civil Rights activist and American minister, Doctor Martin Luther King Jr once had an infamous and moving dream of his own. A dream so powerful and enlightening that it still is seared into the minds of millions for what has almost been 50 years since first said. “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.” He preached these wise words to a crowd of 250,000 people in Washington D.C, influencing and becoming the central idea to the civil right movement of the 1960s. It is sad to think that although this dream of Martin Luther King displayed an absence of the typical themes such as fantasy and imagination that most dreams contain, it can relate to a dream by lacking the sense of reality. I say this as no matter the support and power behind the equality and civil right movement, we will forever live in a society run by a system that is racist and opposed to any change of this manner. Despite this obstacle, we must stay true to this vision and continue with the small steps we are able to make. From Doctor King’s speech, the new law of the ‘Civil Rights Act of 1964’ was secured and passed through government putting a supposed end to discrimination and segregation.

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“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but the content of their character.” A deep and meaningful quote similar to something Coach Yoast said in the 2001 Walt Disney film ‘Remember the Titans’. Being set in the 1970s, ‘Remember the Titans’ showed the fresh movement of the integration in society and the strides made towards equality. To me this quote and racism in general means so much more than just judging someone on whether they are black or white, surfacing my personal opinion that any race can be racist. It is much deeper than only saying black people are threats, and white people are privileged. You just have to look at other recent issues over the last few years to see the many other stereotypes produced by society; Arabs are terrorists, Hispanics are illegal immigrants, Asians have coronavirus: to see the mistreatment and racial slurs that can be encountered by each race.

“I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice”. A key line that couldn’t depict our current situation in the world any better. Usually a line like this would fly over my head without a second thought, but since the murder of the innocent George Floyd at the hands of police brutality in the very state of Mississippi, myself, alongside many others all over the world have had the moment to open our eyes and reflect on such an important issue. Being a white individual, I was honestly unaware and very much horrified that racism and prejudice to this extent still existed within our society, not only to the African American community, but to our very own Indigenous Australians. The racism directed towards our Australian Indigenous community has caused many years of intergenerational trauma that has evolved into generations of mistrust with our police authorities, something we owe to improve for the First People of Australian land.

In conclusion, as a white privileged Australian, living a comfortable life without struggle and real adversity, I may never know the true racial hardships of others. Therefore, it is important that I can empathise and dream for a better world, where people like Martin Luther King, George Floyd and the many Indigenous Australians have a real chance for an equal life. Where acceptance of all people is based on the soul of the man rather than the colour of our skin. Our humanity allows us to dream. “I dream today” for true equality for all mankind, where humans acknowledge the true deeds and actions for all as lasting legacies, rather than racial injustice.

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Helen Keller’s Quote on Dreams: Critical Analysis. (2022, March 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved April 17, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/helen-kellers-quote-on-dreams-critical-analysis/
“Helen Keller’s Quote on Dreams: Critical Analysis.” Edubirdie, 17 Mar. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/helen-kellers-quote-on-dreams-critical-analysis/
Helen Keller’s Quote on Dreams: Critical Analysis. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/helen-kellers-quote-on-dreams-critical-analysis/> [Accessed 17 Apr. 2024].
Helen Keller’s Quote on Dreams: Critical Analysis [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Mar 17 [cited 2024 Apr 17]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/helen-kellers-quote-on-dreams-critical-analysis/

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