On this page, you can find a bibliography of resources that we have found that relate to the American Dream


U.S.A. by Dos Passos. PS3507.0743U92. pub.1939 (p.23; 350/1)

Ragged Dick by Horatio Alger, Jr. PS1029.A3A6. pub. 1868. (p.138/9)

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson. PN4874.T444A3. pub.1998 (p.6; 18/9; 24/5; 56/7; 164/5; 187; 190/1)

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. PS3511.I9G7. pub. 1980 (p.6)

The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. PS3537.I85J85. pub. 2005

On the Road by Jack Kerouac. PS3521.E735O52. pub. 1957 (p.6/7; 10/1)

An American Dream by Norman Mailer. PS3525.A4152A4. pub. 1965

Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald. PS3511.I9T4. pub. 1962

Something Happened by Joseph Heller. PS3558.E476S65. pub. 1974

An American Dream Girl by James T. Farrell. PS3511A738A7. pub. 1950 (p.30/1; 32; 74; 82/3; 81-85)

Green Mansions by W.H. Hudson. PR6015.U145G7. pub. 1932 (p.10/1)

American Dream by Michael Foster. PS3511.O65A4. pub. 1937

Struggling Upward by Horatio Alger, Jr. PS1029.A3S775. pub. 1971

An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser. PS3507.R55A7. pub. 2003

The Rocking-Horse Winner by D.H. Lawrence.  (Print out)

Company by Max Barry. pub. 2005/6?

Jennifer Government by Max Barry. PS3552.A7424J46. pub. 2003

Manhattan Transfer by John Dos Passos

East of Eden by John Steinbeck

Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

Sister Carrie by Theodor Dreiser


The Complete Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau

First Hand Accounts
Soul on Ice by Eldridge Cleaver. E185.97.C6. pub. 1935 (p66/7??)

Stiffed: The Betrayal of the American Man by Susan Faludi. Pub. 2000 (p.594/5; 598/9; 602/3)

Bait and Switch by Barbara Ehrenreich. pub. 2005

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich. pub. 2001 (p.12/3; 18; 26/7)

American Notes by Charles Dickens. E165.D6. pub. 1968

Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X. E185.97.L5A3. pub. 1973 (p.192/3; 280; 365; 377; 458/9

Letters from an American Farmer by Hector St. John  de Creveceur. E163.C826. pub.

Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville. JK216.T713. pub. 2000 (p.3; 6/7; 52/3;

The Busby Berkeley Book by Tony Thomas & Jim Terry, with Busby Berkeley

Redesigning the American Dream: The Future of Housing, Work, and Family Life by Dolores Hayden. HD7293.H39. pub. 1986 (p.1; 6/7; 16/7; 18/9)

Architecture and the American Dream by Craig Whitaker. pub. 1996 (p.4-5; 7; 31

City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles by Mike Davis. HN80.L7D38. pub. 1992 (p.228/9)

The Theming of America: American Dreams, Media Fantasies, and Themed Environments by Mark Gottdiener pub. 2001

Roots by Alex Haley. E185.97.H24A33. pub.1976

The Great Divide: Second thoughts on the American Dream by Studs Terkel. E839.4.T47. pub. 1988 (p.66/7; 100/1; 124/5; 158/9; 210/1; 278/9; 282/3; 290/1; 294/5; 252/3; 358/9; 370/1)

American Dreams: Lost and Found by Studs Terkel. pub. 1980 (p.vii; xxii/I; 4/5; 52/3; 83-94; 282/3; 294/5; 296/7; 304-307; 314/5; 318/9; 322-327; 424/5; 428/9; 436/7; 438/9; 448/9; 458/9; 474/5) (New York Times report on what a random sampling of people consider the American Dream, interviewed around New York City)

Lit. Criticism

Literature and the Sixth Sense by Philip Rahv. PN761.R26. pub. 1969 (p.332/3)

American Dream American Nightmare: Fiction since 1960 by Kathryn Hume. PS374.F24H86. pub. 2000 (p.208/9; 228/9)

The American Dream and the Popular Novel by Elizabeth Long. PS374.B45L65. pub. 1985 (p121; 122)

From Rags to Riches by John Trebbel. PS1029.A3Z85. pub. 1963.

Dreamers of the American Dream by Stewart H. Holbrook. HN57.H55. pub. 1957 (p.150/1)

American Dreams American Nightmares by David Madden. PS221.M25. pub. 1970 (xiv/v; xvii/ix; 28/9)

American Vertigo Bernard Henri Levy

Art of Democracy -Jim Cullen

Oh Say, Did You Know? by Fred Dubose/Martha Halley 973 D


The Epic of America by James Truslow Adams. E178.A2594. pub. 1959 (p.90/1??; 374/5; 376/7; 384/5)

Facing up to the American Dream by Jennifer L. Hochschild. E185.615.H55. pub. 1995 (p. 254/5)

Tender is the Night edited by Marvin J. LaHood. PS3511.I9T47. pub. 1969

The Image or What Happened to the American Dream by Daniel J. Boorstin. E169.1.B752. pub. 1962 (p.239; 240/1; 250/1; 254/5; 258/9)

The American Dream by Jim Cullen. E169.1.C837. pub. 2003 (p.32)

The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama. Pub. 2006 (p.22/3; 54/5; 68/9; 144/5)

MLK, Jr. speech

Malcolm X  Cleveland 1964 speech in response to MKL, Jr.’s above speech

Reflecting on America: Anthropological Views of US Culture by Clare L. Boulanger pub. 2008

Suburbia: the American Dream and Dilemma by Philip C. Dolce

The Real American Dream by Andrew Delbanco

Bread & Roses: Mills, Migrants, and the Struggle for the American Dream by Bruce Watson

Feminism in Our Time by Miriam Schneier

Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

American Dream, Global Nightmare: The Dilemna of U.S. Human Rights Policy by Sandy Vogelsang 327.73 V


American Dream Gobal Nightmare by Sandy Vogelesang. JX1417.V63. pub. 1980

Silent Depression by Wallace C. Peterson. HC106.8.P46. pub. 1994

The American Dream vs. The Gospel of Wealth by Norton Garfinkle. HC103.G32. pub. 2006

Restoring the American Dream by Thomas A. Kochan. HD4904.25.K634. pub. 2005 (p.xii/i; 204/5)

The Good Life and its Discontents by Robert J. Samuelson pub. 1995

American Dreams by Vernon Louis Parrington, Jr. HX806.P37. pub. 1947

American Dreaming: Immigrant Life on the Margins by Sarah J. Mahler. HN90.M26M34. pub. 1995 (p.4/5; 214/5; 230/1)

Declining Fortunes by Katherine S. Newman. HN90.S6N47. pub. 1993 (p.ix; x/i; 148/9; 150/1; 152/3; 154/5; 160/1; 162/3;

Article- “Working Families Fall Behind” by Jared and Elise Gould

Is the American Dream Killing You? By Paul Stiles

Diners, Bowling Alleys and Trailer Parks Andrew Hurley HC110.C 6H87 2001

Golden Dreams: California in the age of Abundance – Kevin Starr


Photography and the American Dream , Bill Clinton TR6.N392.A477 2001

Photographing the American Dream Solomon Butcher TR652.B86 1985

American Photograph TR820.5.G82 1991

Suburbia Bill Owen TR6 54. O87

Life Magazine : photo essays TR820.5 67

Separate, But Equal: the Mississippi Photographs of Henry Clay Anderson 305.896 A

American Photography and the American Dream by James Guimond

Marion Post Wolcott: A Photographic Journey by F. Jack Hurley 770.924 Wolcott H

The Way We Were: Decades of the Twentieth Century–Life Magazine, A photographic journey through America’s last hundred years

Gun People by Patrick Carr, photographs by George W. Gardner

Where We Live: Photos of America from the Berman collection

William Eggleston’s Guide 779.0924 Eggleston

American Photography: A Century of Images by Vicki Goldberg and Richard Silberman 770.973 G

Other Books that have Come Up in Research

Life Magazine American Dream photo essays

Look Magazine

Suburban Nation Andrea Dian HT384.U5 D83 2001

Outsourcing the American Dream by Christopher England pub. 2001

Pursuing the American Dream by Cal Jillson pub. 2004

Second-rate Nation: from the American Dream to the American Myth by Sam Sieber

Mexican Workers and American Dreams by Camille Guerin-Gonzales

Travels in Hyper-Reality

Where We Live Now

Paradise Drive by David Brooks

Suburban nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream

The Bulldozer in the countryside – Adam Rome

Rise Up Singing

Interpreter of Maladies – Jhump Lahiri

The Americans – Photos by Robert Frank

Love and The American Dream -Robert Indiana

Archtecture of Happiness

Duane Hanson Sculptures of the American Dream

Duane Hanson: Virtual Reality

Bowling Alone

Training for Dummies by Elaine Biech

Boulevard of Dreams by Constance Rosenblum

Struggling Upward -Horatio Alger

American Dream: Three Women, Ten Kids, and a Nation’s Drive to End Welfare – Jason DeParle

Facing Up To the American Dream: Race, Class, and the Soul of the Nation By Jennifer L. Hochschild

The Field Guide to Getting Lost By Rebecca Solnit

American Eccentrics: 140 of the Greatest Human Interest Stories Ever Told by Carl Sifakis

A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn

Great Issues in American History by Richard Hofstadter

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie 158.1 C


The first prologue written for the American stage, written by William Dunlop

A Raisin In The Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

Our Town by Thornton Wilder

The Skin of Our Teeth by Thornton Wilder

The Emperor Jones by Eugene O’Neill

The Hairy Ape by Eugene O’Neill

Camino Real by Tennessee Williams

Glengarry Glen Ross by David Mamet

Come Back, Little Sheba: A drama in two acts by William Inge

The American Dream by Edward Albee. PS3501.L178A7. pub. 1961 (p.68/9; 104/5)

Desire Under The Elms by Eugene O’Neill

Strange Interlude by Eugene O’Neill

Mourning Becomes Electra by Eugene O’Neill

The Crucible by Arthur Miller

All My Sons by Arthur Miller

Metamora by John Augustus Stone

Porgy and Bess by George Gershwin

The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams

Streamers by David Rabe

Brecht On Theatre translated by John Willet

True West by Sam Shepard

Savage Love by Sam Shepard

La Turista by Sam Shepard

Tongues by Sam Shepard

Buried Child by Sam Shepard

Curse of the Starving Class by Sam Shepard

The Goat or Who is Sylvia? by Edward Albee

Vieux Carre by Tennessee Williams

Long Day’s Journey Into Night by Eugene O’Neill

Ah, Wilderness! by Eugene O’Neill

Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller

Fences by August Wilson

The Poor of New York by Dion Boucicault

The Octoroon by Dion Boucicault

The America Play by Suzan-Lori Parks

Uncle Tom’s Cabin by George Aiken & Harriet Beecher Stowe

Under The Gaslight by Augustin Daly

The Girl of the Golden West by David Belasco

A Little Teatable Chitchat, alamode; or an ancient discovery reduced to modern practice–Being a Dialogue, and a dish of Tea by John Smith

The Contrast by Royall Tyler

Bunker Hill or The Death of General Warren by John Daly Burk

The Adding Machine by George Bernard Shaw

The Devil’s Disciple by George Bernard Shaw

Ponteach, or, The Savages of America by Robert Rogers

Ragged Dick by Horatio Alger

Promenade by Maria Irene Fornes


*Artist’s listed here are who’s lyrics we have, not necessarily the original author of the song*

Cry Freedom- Dave Matthews Band

In the Sweet By and By- Johnny Cash, Polly Parton

Lay My Burden Down- Seemless

Lift Every Voice and Sing

When the Saints Go Marching In- Louis Armstrong

Born in the USA- Bruce Springsteen

America the Beautiful- words: Katharine Bates; Melody: Samuel Ward

7 O’Clock News/Silent Night- Simon and Garfunkel

Blowin’ in the Wind- Joan Baez

Home Sweet Home

This Ain’t No Rag, It’s a Flag- Charlie Daniels Band

The American Ruse- MC5

Blood is Thicker than Water- Pitbull

American Pie- Don McLean

Living in America- James Brown

Made in America- Richie Sambora

Michael  Jordan- Five for Fighting

Sounds of Silence- Simon and Garfunkel

Teach Your Children- Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young

What You Own- Rent

America- Waylon Jennings

In America- Downhere

Johnny America- Five for Fighting

America Town- Five for Fighting

Last Great American- Five for Fighting

Sail Away- Randy Newman

Amazing Grace- The Blind Boys of Alabama

American Woman- The Guess Who

Boom- System of a Down

Chimes of Freedom- The Byrds

Fortunate Son- John Fogerty

Good Night, New York- Nancy Griffith

Hallelujah- Jeff Buckley

I’m A Patriot- Pearl Jam

Know Your Rights- The Clash

New America- Bad Religion

Part of the Process- Morcheeba

We’re All to Blame- Sum 41

Where is the Love- Black Eyed Peas

With God on Our Side- Bob Dylan

Battle Hymn of the Republic

Christmas in Washington- Earle Steve

Erie Canal

Help Save the Youth of America- Billy Bragg

My Country ‘tis of Thee

Monster/Suicide/America- Steppenwolf

Only in America- Brooks and Dunn

Only in America- Jay and the Americans

I Miss America- Harry Chapin

Boulevard of Broken Dreams- Green Day

America- Neil Diamond

Free to be You and Me- the New Seekers

This Land is Your Land- words and music: Woody Guthrie

My Old Kentucky Home- words and music: Stephen C. Foster

You’re a Grand Old Flag

Compared to What-Roberta Flack

We Shall Overcome


America – Simon & Garfunkel

Mr. Farmer – The Seeds

You and I – Ingrid Michaelson

Sell Out – Reel Big Fish

Little Boxes – Malvina Reynolds

America – West Side Story

American Life – Madonna



Don’t You Push Me Down

This Train is Bound For Glory



Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

An American Tail


American Beauty

Coming to America

Office Space

On the Waterfront

The Pursuit of Happyness

Cinderella Man

Forest Gump

Wall Street

Citizen Kane

It’s a Wonderful Life


October Sky

Good Will Hunting

Revolutionary Road

Working Girl


Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Pretty Woman

Some Like it Hot

Auntie Mame



West Side Story

Thoroughly Modern Millie

Grapes of Wrath

Roger and Me


The Office, Season 1

The Singing Detective

Schoolhouse Rock – “I’m Just a Bill”

Reference Collection Books

Can be accessed at New York Public Library

The American Dream and Contemporary Hollywood Cinema by J. Emmett Winn

Elvis Presley, Richard Nixon and the American Dream by Connie Kirchberg and Mark Hendrickx

Enlightened Racism: The Cosby Show, Audiences and the Myth of the American Dream by Sut and Justin Lewis Jhally (Ch. 5)

Mythmakers of the American Dream: The Nostalgic Vision in Popular Culture by Wiley Lee Umphlett

Graham and Taylor: The American Dream Revisited in Eddy, no. 4, Summer 1974

History, an American Dream in Women and Performance, v. 1, no. 2, Winter 1984

Article Index

Quotes and Song Lyrics:

Motivational Quotes including George Eliot and Ralph Waldo Emerson

Lyrics to Sunny Afternoon by The Kinks

Lyrics to Papa was a Rodeo by The Magnetic Fields

Lyrics to Free by Cat Power

Abraham Lincoln Quote on free labor

The Buffalo by Neca Stoller

Various Links and Quotes


The American Dream from the Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Ballot of the Bullet by Malcolm X

Articles about the Correlation between Economy and the American Dream

Washington Post article on the link between the economy and an attraction to your work

Income Picture by Jared Bernstein and Elise Gould

Restoring the American Dream: A Working Families’

Agenda for America by Thomas A. Kochan: Summary and Chapter 1

Synopsis of Roger Weisberg’s Waging a Living plus an interview with Weisberg

It’s not Easy being a billionaire from the Prospecting Professor

Can You Imagine This Country? By Chuck Baldwin

What Happens to the American Dream in a Recession by Katharine Q. Seelye (New York Times article)

New Men: The Heroic Soldier Narrative in American Advertisements During World War II

Articles about the American Dream in General:

The Origin of the term “American Dream”

What is the American Dream? Lesson Plan

Letter III What is an American from Letters from an American Farmer

Concluding Remarks in American Notes by Charles Dickens

The American Dream –

Introduction: A Dream Country

Stark Reality of the American Dream by Humphrey Hawksley

Social Mobility and the American Dream: What Do College Students Believe? By Deborah Abowitz

Literary Criticism:

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Evolving American Dream: The “Pursuit of Happiness”

in Gatsby, Tender is the Night, and the Last Tycoon by John Callahan



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