Transforming the American Dream into Imagination of the Earth

One of Shakespeare’s greatest monologues from As You Like It reads, “All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players…”.  After World War II, the United State, took the reign of empire. With the development of technology, Hollywood and television, the US put itself forward on the world stage as an influential director of the play. The American dream became a theatrical framework, igniting many to become a part of its grandiose enterprise in the name of globalization.

In this workshop, the idea of the American dream will be considered as an evolving concept in light of commercial globalization. We will explore psychology’s contribution to its production and promotion.  First, we will look at how psychological theories of western individualism collided with the rise of capitalism and consumerism and paved a foundation for the idea of the American dream to become more materially focused. Secondly, we will look at how psychology was used by advertisement industries to promote its theatrical fantasy. Thirdly, we will examine the consequences of the American dream, as it is currently defined, as a part of a destructive force in a world seen in the “War on terror”, conflict in the Middle East, and the free fall derivative economy.

Lastly, using liberation psychology and psychoanalytic theory, we will examine how psychology can dissolve the illusion of isolated western individualism and awaken in American a sense of global responsibility that stems from the shared heart.  Further we will explore how psychology can contribute in solidarity with grass roots activists around the world to transform American dream into a common vision of the earth.

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