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40 minutes | a year ago
Episode 3: The American Dream
In this episode the Critical Conversation is the American Dream. It is very difficult to define but a fundamental part of life in America. In the podcast we cover a range of questions that delve into the American Dream, its history, cultural influence and wether it is a myth or reality. The discussion points are: How can we define it? There seems to be two parallel strands to it: a) the idealistic version – one of limitless possibilities where everyone has the constitutional right to pursue ‘happiness’ and be the best possible version of themselves; b) the materialistic version – a land where anyone can become a millionaire. Can you explain these two interpretations of the American Dream more fully? What are the origins of the Dream? To what extent does it owe its conception to the founding fathers? Who coined the phrase? When did it first gain common currency as a phrase? What did Horatio Alger do to popularise the ‘rags to riches’ version of the American Dream? What other writers or thinkers have been most influential in shaping our understanding of it? How does the phrase ‘conspicuous consumption’ relate to the American Dream? Why do we only have an American Dream: what’s so particular about America that has created this idea? Has the American Dream ever really been achievable or is it just a myth? A romantic idea or really achievable? Is it an out-dated concept in Trump’s America? Or more alive than ever?
42 minutes | a year ago
Episode 2: Manifest Destiny
Welcome to the second episode of Critical Conversations, focussed on the concept of Manifest Destiny.
22 minutes | a year ago
Episode 1: The Beginnings of America
Welcome to the first Critical Conversations Podcast. The History and English team at Vyners School will be talking about a topic relevant to both courses for those students studying A Level History, English and Politics. Episode 1 is focussed on the Beginnings of America, how a colony became a country and the implications that has for the American psyche.
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