Connections between Lewis Lapham's essay, "Who and What is America?" and Christopher Edley, Jr.'s essay "The New American Dilemma: Racial Profiling Post-9/11"

Essay by xtwister161College, UndergraduateA-, May 2005

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Unified America

Lewis Lapham's essay, "Who and What is America?" raises the subject that all Americans share a "unified field of emotion" and how we disguise "the noun" American. This unified field of emotion is what connects all of the citizens' communities together, making the nation a stronger place. According to Lapham, the unified field of emotion helps Americans form communities and agree on similar ideas, such as religious, cultural and political beliefs. The field of emotion gives power and strength to the communities to agree and live with each other no matter what social class or race. There are factors that influence what Americans desire, what we believe, and how we identify others and ourselves. Friends, family and the media affect Americans' views and what we see ourselves as. Not all Americans can consider identifying themselves as "the noun" American. The media and the politicians try to categorize Americans and split us into groups turning one against another.

Politics turn Democratic Americans against Republican Americans and the media turns white Americans against Americans of color. As a result, the sense of feeling as one nation is lost, causing prejudice, dishonesty, and hate. Christopher Edley, Jr. states in his essay "The New American Dilemma: Racial Profiling Post-9/11" that our diversity is what makes our nation strong, but this strength can be seen only when our diverse nation acts as one. Edley correctly emphasizes that when we identify ourselves as a plain American without a subordination, we are able to speak with candor and truth.

Americans have a common cause, and a bond that we share. This connection can exists no matter what race, age, or gender a person is. The bond gives us the emotion of being...

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