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My American Dream Sounds Like

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Personally, the American Dream today is the ability to succeed by doing what you love. I understand that everyone has different dreams of how they want to live their life. Some people just want to graduate college and get a Bachelor’s degree, then live the rest of their life working an average 9-5 job, then get old and retire. For me that is definitely not the life I see myself living. I am dreaming bigger and I visualize myself being very successful with my company. I told myself that I will never work a 9-5 job again, unless I know for a fact that it would help me gain connections in the business that I want to do. I am and I will continue to be my own boss. I feel that there are so many kids going to school just because their parents want them to. They have no set goals for themselves. I define those people as dead fish just going with the flow. In today’s society I’ve realized that there are so many ways to be successful if you put in the effort. I plan on being wealthy enough to provide for my family and being able to treat myself to luxury items. I want to be able to enjoy my life by traveling the world with my significant other and/or friends. My American Dream sounds like Kanye West’s ‘All Falls Down’ featuring Syleena Johnson.

Kanye West released the song ‘All Falls Down’ on his album The College Dropout in 2004. I wanted to choose a song by Kanye West because he is a creative genius even though he’s crazy. He’s a veteran in the music industry and is definitely a role model to many people. I specifically chose ‘All Falls Down’ because I feel like I can relate some of the verses to my life. This song was written about 15 years ago and speaks about issues that are still very relevant today. It is broken up into three different verses and a chorus. In this song he mainly speaks about the education system in American and how people go to college and get an education because they have the money to do so. Kanye West is saying that not all of life's lessons are learned in school. School teaches us from the books, while our parents and families teach us the real-life lessons. Kanye views school as just another one of those things that are the norms in society. The norm is to go to college once you graduate high school because if you don’t, you’ll be viewed as being a ‘rebel’. Instead of worrying about what everyone else thinks Kanye preaches a different method. He frowns upon doing things just because everyone else does them such as buying a lot of clothes and expensive cars.

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In verse one Kanye says, “She's so self-conscious / She has no idea what she doin' in college / That major that she majored in don't make no money / But she won't drop out, her parents'll look at her funny”. This verse shows that even though getting a college degree won’t help this girl, she doesn’t want to drop out because she knows that her parents will be disappointed. I feel like this can relate to a lot of people, including me, that are going to college and have strict parents or parents that just don’t understand that you don’t need to go to college to be successful. Kanye frowns upon the act of going to school because it is what is accepted in society. I don’t think he necessarily hates the college schooling system, he just wants people to go for the right reasons, not just to fit in. Not everyone is built for school. After that he goes on to say, “Now, tell me that ain't insecurr / The concept of school seems so securr / Sophomore, three yurrs, ain't picked a carurr”. While society paints a picture of going to college as a “secure” way to improve one’s future, the reality is that getting a higher education takes a lot of work. It’s costly and doesn’t always prepare you to pursue a fulfilling path. I personally think that getting a college degree doesn’t secure your future or a good job, especially now in 2019. College degrees are becoming less and less impressive. A bunch of large companies no longer require employees to have a college degree. This includes companies like Google, Apple, and IBM just to name a few. These lines also talk about how many college students have been going to college for three or more years and have yet to pick a career path or major. Even when students do decide on a major, they tend to change it because they realize it’s not for them.

In verse two of this classic song Kanye says, “It seem we livin' the American Dream / But the people highest up got the lowest self-esteem”. To many people the American Dream is about being wealthy and successful, but the people that seem to achieve this dream are often left unfulfilled. Most likely because of the things they had to sacrifice to get there or the meaninglessness of an existence defined by the things you own.

The chorus sung by Syleena Johnson says, “Oh, when it all, it all falls down / I'm tellin' you all, it all falls down”. It is basically trying to encourage people to think about what life would be like without material possessions, success, and all the external aspects of life that people lean on to sustain a sense of self-worth. She’s asking what will it feel like when all of those things fall down? Because one day it will.

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My American Dream Sounds Like. (2022, December 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved March 5, 2024, from
“My American Dream Sounds Like.” Edubirdie, 15 Dec. 2022,
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