Throughout Toni Morrison’s Black Matter(s) she discusses the topic of the American Dream and describes it as a “clean slate.” She refers back to the 20th century and the shift from the New World to the Old World throughout her writing, however I find it interesting that this topic of the “American Dream” is still very much applicable and present in modern America. Immigrants came to America at the start of the New World in hopes of gaining control over their destiny and their freedom. Specifically, Morrsion notes, the people that were unhappy with a certain aspect of their lives came to America because the possibilities were seen as endless: the powerless could be powerful and the ones being punished could become the ones doing the punishing. Today, immigrants are still coming to The United States in hopes of a “clean slate.” Morrison states that the American Dream is a “universal yearning” for a future and a freedom unknown to humans prior. Although this longing for the American Dream is still prevalent today, it is no longer a new phenomenon.
Questions for Morrison, Locke, and Marx:
What should be the first step in establishing a new civilization? Where should the priorities lie?
Is there freedom in this established civilization? How do you define freedom?
Is everyone equal in practice? If not how is the civilization? Are there social classes? Who is at the top?