Playing out the American Dream

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Hi teachers,

I met some terms in "7 Best things couples do", and don't know what do they mean:
1/ Playing out the American Dream.
2/ Identity Foreclosed
3/ Identity Moratorrium

Please explain them to me.
Thanks so much.


Aug 25, 2007
Member Type
English Teacher
The American Dream: The term was first used by James Truslow Adams in his book The Epic of America which was written in 1931. He states: "The American Dream is "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.

Identity Foreclosed: "Identity foreclosure. This individual looks as though she has achieved a solid identity, since she has made a commitment to a set of values, a career path, or a role in life. But this commitment occurs prematurely, before the person has had a chance to experiment with alternatives. An actual 'identity crisis' was never recognized or confronted; the individual has taken on an identity the way she would buy an off the rack suit of clothes. The classic example of identity foreclosure is the young person who goes into the family business not because she's thought about it but because it's always been assumed that she would."

Identity Moratorium:
"Identity diffusion indicates that the adolescent has made no commitment as yet regarding a specific developmental task and may or may not have experienced a crisis in that domain. Foreclosure holds that the adolescent has made a commitment without having experienced a crisis. In (Identity) Moratorium, the adolescent is in a state of crisis and has made no commitment or at best an unclear one. Identity achievement signifies that the adolescent has surmounted the crisis and made a commitment."
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