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  • What are Americans aspiring toward in 2020?
  • What are Americans aspiring toward in 2020?
    Maria Oswalt (2019) ©

Deep Dive: The New American Dream

In the New American Dream Deep Dive, we explore how aspirations in the US are evolving and how citizens are redefining success as the country’s place on the world stage is challenged. How can brands strike the right tone when looking to reach the modern American consumer?

Location United States

In his 1931 book, The Epic America, writer and historian James Truslow Adams popularized the term ‘the American Dream’, describing it as “that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.” A clear picture of the Dream subsequently took shape – one of a white picket fence and a middle-class family with 2.4 kids – which seemed to be frozen in time and went unchanged for decades.

Today, the vision of America as a land of freedom, equality, and opportunity ...



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    Is the American Dream still within reach?

    Amid economic and political turbulence, the idea that anyone can see success in the US is being increasingly questioned. Canvas8 polled 1,000 Americans and spoke to thirteen people to find out whether they think the American Dream still exists and whether it’s achievable.

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    The Black cowboys elevating the ‘Yeehaw Agenda’

    Black cowboys galloped into mainstream culture during the 2020 BLM protests, sparking conversations about the whitewashed history of the Old West and highlighting the diversity of Black identity. How is this embodiment of the ‘Yeehaw Agenda’ helping to reimagine the American Dream?

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    Progressive Shopper: info for values-led buyers

    As Americans become more socially and politically engaged, they want to support brands that share their values. Progressive Shopper clues online shoppers into a brand’s political affiliations, offering liberal Americans a chance to put their money where their mouth is.

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    Is American exceptionalism dead?

    A lot of businesses traffic in American exceptionalism, tapping into national pride as part of their creative comms and brand identity. But while such aspirational messaging used to resonate with Americans – and many people around the world – will COVID-19 make this narrative less appealing?