In the field of academic, some students have always had the perception that intelligence is fixed. In contrast, others espouse that intelligence can be nurtured through hard work and education. Students who subscribe to the fixed notion of intelligence are perceived to have a fixed mindset and are often concerned about the quantity of fixed intelligence they can be able to possess. On the other hand, those who believe intelligence can be nurtured espouse that not every individual is gifted like Einstein. However, they have the belief that humans have the ability not only to improve their skills, but also enhance their abilities through hard work and dedication. Such students are referred to possess a growth mindset, which allows them to learn from mistakes, benefit from previous failures, and to be persistent amidst setbacks. These traits tend to make them more success in comparison to fixed mindset students (Dweck par 2-4).
Similar principles have shaped the development the foundation of the American dream from the founding fathers of America to the contemporary society. However, the contemporary society seems not to understand what it meant to the founding fathers to fight for liberty. This is because they never had to sacrifice anything to attain their American dreams or fight for freedom from the colonial regime. The American dream is anchored on the rights of Americans to pursue higher education, enjoy self-governance, as well as access civil liberties such as the right to worship and seek happiness. However, these liberties came at a costly price. On the 4th of July, rather than take the time to remember the liberators of the nation and the pain and sacrifices they had to endure, most Americans perceive it just like another day away from work. They engage in partying and reckless spending. This implies that the American dream has changed as the society continues to evolve. The pursuit of happiness, life and liberty have been transformed into seeking liberty, life and abundant stuff. This has led to the consumerist culture witnessed in the US, which is responsible for the growth of inequalities in the society. It appears Americans have forgotten what previously made the nation great (Caswell par 2-5).
Because of the growth of consumerism and the widening social disparities between the rich and the poor, some constituents of the American society have felt disenfranchised leading to the development radical sects. This has heightened the cases of domestic terrorism in the country since most people feel that the nation is diverting from the foundations that built the American dream. Since the 9/11 attacks, more than 25 plots targeting various sites the US organized by domestic terrorists have been stopped by law enforcement. The anchors of the American dream such as liberty, the right to life, and the pursuit of happiness are being contradicted by the US government when it engages in meaningless wars in Arab countries. Democracy and liberty cannot be enforced on other societies, but rather they should aspire to emulate the US instead of being forced through military action. This explains why more Muslims in the US are engaging in terrorism because they feel the state is against their religion since it is fighting Islamic states and killing Muslims at will (Reitman 2).
Even though ordinary Americans seem to benefit from more prosperity in comparison to other countries, they appear to be more anxious and exhausted than in any other period in the nation’s history. The contemporary society seeks more than material possessions such as large TV sets and vehicles. Despite having some of the most competitive industries and economies, American workers are not happy. No matter how hard they work, the remuneration they receive is not equivalent to their output. On the other hand, the Silicon Valley continues to produce millionaires every day (Hamel par. 1-4). The American society has clearly evolved, but are individuals aware of their evolution. The developments in the technological field are arguably more critical to humanity than the biological evolution. In this contemporary era, technology and not evolution has taken over the role of shaping and defining the world because devices now have more power in determining human behavior in comparison to biological genes. However, the quest is whether technological evolution will take humanity in the right direction as it assumed biological evolution did (Wu par. 3-5).
Caswell, L. Ryan. American Consumerism: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of…Stuff. The Real Truth, 2014. Web. 28 January 2017. <https://realtruth.org/articles/140610-003.html>.
Dweck, S. Carol. Brainology transforming student’s motivation to learn, 2008. Web. 28 January 2017. <http://www.nais.org/Magazines-Newsletters/ISMagazine/Pages/Brainology.aspx>.
Hamel, Gary. “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Cheap Stuff.” LA Times. March 27, 2000. Print. Web. 28 January 2017. <http://articles.latimes.com/2000/mar/27/local/me-13056>.
Reitman, Janet. Jahar’s world, 2013. <http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/j ahars-world-20130717>.
Wu, Tim. As technology gets better, will society get worse?. The New Yorker. February 6, 2014. Web. 28 January 2017. <http://www.newyorker.com/tech/elements/as-technology-gets-better-will-society-get-worse>.