EP 581 Is the American Dream Something We All Can Still Imagine?

When we have dreams about what our future may hold for us, is there anything that limits the possibilities we imagine for ourselves?  In this country, the American Dream holds out the promise of limitless choices for all.  However, Janet Ruane and Karen Cerulo, our guests on this podcast, two sociologists and co-authors of  ‘Dreams of a Lifetime’, have studied our conscious dreams, not those we have when we are are not awake, and they find that our imaginings are patterned in very specific ways and that our social circumstances affect the seemingly private and unique lives wrapped up in the stories we tell ourselves about what may await us if we have good fortune.  Dreams differed depending on the person’s social class, racial group and gender.  Age, too, was a major distinguishing characteristic.  Dreams change throughout the years. It’s a whole new way about thinking about our mobility in our society.  If you dare to dream, we are told, the journey holds great potential.  Of course the flip side is what if you have difficulty thinking you deserve all that this life has to offer? We contemplate all of this on the podcast.