The California Dream is the psychological motivation to gain fast wealth or fame in a new land. As a result of the California Gold Rush after 1849, California's name became indelibly connected with the Gold Rush, and fast success in a new world became known as the "California Dream".California was perceived as a place of new beginnings, where great wealth could reward hard work and good luck. The notion inspired the idea of an American Dream. California was seen as a lucky place, a land of opportunity and good fortune. It was a powerful belief, underlying many of the accomplishments of the state, and equally potent when threatened.
Historian H. W. Brands noted that in the years after the Gold Rush, the California Dream spread across the nation:
The old American Dream . . . was the dream of the Puritans, of Benjamin Franklin's "Poor Richard" . . . of men and women content to accumulate their modest fortunes a little at a time, year by year by year. The new dream was the dream of instant wealth, won in a twinkling by audacity and good luck. [This] golden dream . . . became a prominent part of the American psyche only after Sutter's Mill.
Overnight, California gained the international reputation as the "golden state"—with gold and lawlessness the main themes.
Generations of immigrants have been attracted by the California Dream. California farmers,oil drillers, movie makers, aerospace corporations and "dot-com" entrepreneurs have each had their boom times in the decades after the Gold Rush.
Part of the "California Dream" was "that every family could have its own private home."
As historian Kevin Starr has pointed out, for many if not most migrants to the golden state, "the dream outran the reality."The Okies of the 1930s "found their California dream transformed into a nightmare,' notes Walter Stein. As a result, "the California Dream is a love affair with an idea, a marriage to a myth"
Observers report a common stereotyped perception that people are happier in California. This perception is anchored in the perceived superiority of the California climate, and is justified to some extent by the fact that Californians are indeed more satisfied with their climate than are Midwesterners,[ citation needed ] with much of California enjoying a Mediterranean climate. Surveys of students show the advantages of life in California were not reflected in differences in the self-reported overall life satisfaction of those who live there.
Historian Kevin Starr in his seven-volume history of the state has explored in great depth the "California Dream"—the realization by ordinary Californians of the American Dream. California starting in the late 19th century promised the highest possible standard of life for the middle classes, and indeed for the skilled blue collar workers and farm owners as well. Poverty existed, but was concentrated among the migrant farm workers made famous in The Grapes of Wrath , where the Joad family, driven out of the Dust Bowl, searches for the California Dream. By the 1950s the Joads and the other "Okies" and "Arkies" (migrants from Oklahoma and Arkansas) were achieving the dream too. It was not so much the upper class (who preferred to live in New York and Boston). The California Dream meant an improved and more affordable family life: a small but stylish and airy house marked by a fluidity of indoor and outdoor space, such as the ubiquitous California bungalow and a lush backyard—the stage, that is, for quiet family life in a sunny climate. It meant very good jobs, excellent roads, plentiful facilities for outdoor recreation, and the schools and universities that were the best in the world by the 1940s. James M. Cain, an eastern writer who visited the Golden State, reported in 1933 that the archetypal Californian "addresses you in easy grammar, completes his sentences, shows familiarity with good manners, and in addition gives you a pleasant smile."Cultural phenomena which have fed into the California Dream include the rise of the Hollywood film industry, Silicon Valley, California's aerospace industry, the California wine industry and the Dotcom boom. The phrase has been used in describing Californian's struggles to find a suitable location in the state to achieve success, in 2017, when the cost of living in places like the San Francisco Bay Area were prohibitive.
The phrase "Taking the Cure" was conjured to describe 1950s "u-haul" migrants who, after a year or so pined for home. One drive back home was enough to convince them to stay after all.
The term has been referenced in numerous media, most notably in the song title California Dreamin' , with "California dreaming" used in book and film titles that reference some aspect of the California Dream, such as the 2007 film California Dreaming, and the 2005 UK reality TV series California Dreaming . Lawrence Donegan's California Dreaming: A Smooth-running, Low-mileage, Cut-price American Adventure references the California, (and American) Dream. Also referencing it is poet Christopher Buckley's Sleepwalk: California dreamin' and a last dance with the '60s. Numerous songs have been written about the California Dream.
The Grapes of Wrath is an American realist novel written by John Steinbeck and published in 1939. The book won the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and it was cited prominently when Steinbeck was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962.
The California Gold Rush (1848–1855) was a gold rush that began on January 24, 1848, when gold was found by James W. Marshall at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California. The news of gold brought approximately 300,000 people to California from the rest of the United States and abroad. The sudden influx of gold into the money supply reinvigorated the American economy; the sudden population increase allowed California to go rapidly to statehood, in the Compromise of 1850. The Gold Rush had severe effects on Native Californians and accelerated the Native American population's decline from disease, starvation and the California genocide.
Daniel Kahneman is an Israeli-American psychologist and economist notable for his work on the psychology of judgment and decision-making, as well as behavioral economics, for which he was awarded the 2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. His empirical findings challenge the assumption of human rationality prevailing in modern economic theory.
An Okie is a person identified with the state of Oklahoma. This connection may be residential, ethnic, historical or cultural. For most Okies, several of these connections exist and are collectively the source of their being Oklahoman.
"California Dreamin'" is a song written by John Phillips and Michelle Phillips and first recorded by Barry McGuire. The best-known version is by the Mamas & the Papas, who sang backup on the original version and released it as a single in 1965. The lyrics express the narrator's longing for the warmth of Los Angeles during a cold winter in New York City. It is recorded in the key of C-sharp minor.
Gerald William Haslam was an author focused on rural and small towns in California's Great Central Valley including its poor and working-class people of all colors. A native of Oildale, California, Haslam has received numerous literary awards.
Golden Dreams is a film about the history of California. It was a featured attraction at Disney California Adventure Park at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, opening with the park on February 8, 2001. It starred Whoopi Goldberg as Calafia, the Queen of California. On September 7, 2008, the last showing of the film to the public was made. The theater was razed in July 2009 and was replaced by The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure. However, the exterior replica of the Bernard Maybeck's Palace of Fine Arts remained. The final showing took place as a private showing for cast members on March 26, 2009.
The written history of the San Diego, California, region began in the present state of California when Europeans first began inhabiting the San Diego Bay region. As the first area of California in which Europeans settled, San Diego has been described as "the birthplace of California."
The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 American drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck's 1939 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The screenplay was written by Nunnally Johnson and the executive producer was Darryl F. Zanuck.
Dust Bowl Ballads is an album by American folk singer Woody Guthrie. It was released by Victor Records, in 1940. All the songs on the album deal with the Dust Bowl and its effects on the country and its people. It is considered to be one of the first concept albums. It was Guthrie's first commercial recording and the most successful album of his career.
Kevin Owen Starr was an American historian and California's state librarian, best known for his multi-volume series on the history of California, collectively called "Americans and the California Dream."
The history of California can be divided into the Native American period, the European exploration period (1542–1769), the Spanish colonial period (1769–1821), the Mexican period (1821–1848), and United States statehood. California was one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse areas in pre-Columbian North America. After contact with Spanish explorers, most of the Native Americans died out from foreign diseases and genocide campaigns.
Gold became highly concentrated in California, United States as the result of global forces operating over hundreds of millions of years. Volcanoes, tectonic plates and erosion all combined to concentrate billions of dollars' worth of gold in the mountains of California. During the California Gold Rush, gold-seekers known as "Forty-Niners" retrieved this gold, at first using simple techniques, and then developing more sophisticated techniques, which spread around the world.
The Grapes of Wrath is an opera in three acts composed by Ricky Ian Gordon to a libretto by Michael Korie based on John Steinbeck’s 1939 novel of the same title. It premiered on February 10, 2007 at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in Saint Paul, Minnesota in a production by Minnesota Opera. The work has been revised in subsequent years and has also been performed as a two-act concert version.
Slavery in colonial California began with the systematic enslavement of indigenous Californians. The arrival of the Spanish colonists introduced chattel slavery and involuntary servitude to the area. White colonists from the Southern and Eastern United States brought their systems of organized slavery to California.
California Dreaming is a 1979 American comedy-drama film starring Glynnis O'Connor, Dennis Christopher, Seymour Cassel and Tanya Roberts and directed by John D. Hancock.
This is a bibliography of Los Angeles, California. It includes books specifically about the city and county of Los Angeles and more generally the Greater Los Angeles Area. The list includes both non-fiction and notable works of fiction that significantly relate to the region. The list does not include annual travel books, recipe books, and currently does not contain works about sports in the region.
The California sound is a popular music aesthetic that originates with American pop and rock recording artists from Southern California in the early 1960s. At first, it was conflated with the California myth, an idyllic setting inspired by the state's beach culture that commonly appeared in the lyrics of commercial pop songs. Later, the sound was expanded outside its initial geography and subject matter and was developed to be more sophisticated, often featuring studio experimentation.
John Boessenecker is an American historian and author, and a lawyer specializing in trust and estate litigation. He is based in San Francisco, California.
An Act for the Admission of the State of California into the Union is the federal legislation that admitted California to the United States as the thirty-first state. California is one of only a few states to become a state without first being an organized territory.