Today, I read an article discussing the American Dream and the Chinese Dream. The article mentioned that the American Dream had long been to achieve financial success for yourself. Now, we all know that each person could have different views of the amount of money and possessions it takes to be considered as having achieved “The Dream.” I will agree that there is some materialism in “The Dream.”
Since Xi Jinping has come to office as the leader of China, I have heard more and more about the dreams of people in China. Xi made a now famous speech where he discussed the Chinese dream, but I think there is some room for interpretation as I dialog with my Chinese friends.
The article stated how Americans were more self-centered with their views of living the dream. According to the article, Americans want more for themselves like money, property, and to be held in high esteem. Our friends in China have a different view. The article said that the Chinese were more focused on the success of their country and advancing their society as opposed to wanting more for themselves. Honestly, I am not sure how much I buy into that. I do agree that the Chinese are very proud of their country, and rightfully so. Their rise as a world power, both economically and militarily, has been very impressive over the last decade. Most of the people I know in China would like a piece of that ever-growing pie! Recent college graduates have seen an explosion of economic growth in their young lives. It is natural that they would want that for themselves, too. Also, these young professionals are feeling tremendous pressure to have success in the early stages of their careers.
My final thoughts on this are that, in my opinion, Chinese and Americans are similar. Everyone wants the opportunity to be successful, provide a comfortable lifestyle for their families, and to have their country portrayed as a world power. Beyond that, each person has their own ideas of how much financial success it will take for them to live comfortably and obtain their version of living the dream. Sure, there are some individuals in each country that absolutely have the heart of a servant, so they are happy with providing care to an elderly family member and not working in a traditional job. It will be interesting to watch what if any changes occur in China once they have had more time to enjoy their position as a world power.