In "Winter Dreams," what makes Dexter "newer and stronger" than the "careless" wealthy people he meets?

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Susan Hurn | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Dexter is "newer and stronger" in that he is the son of an immigrant mother and a member of the working class by birth. He is not a child of privilege; his family is not one that has built and inherited wealth for several American generations. Dexter worked from the time he was a boy because he needed the money, and he worked hard to attend a fine Eastern university, instead of settling for the less expensive state university. Going to a prestigious school was not a birthright for Dexter as it had been for the sons of the wealthy. After college, Dexter continues to work hard, building a business from very little except his own ingenuity. As a result, he becomes a quite wealthy young man. He is strong in that he knows how to work and plan for what he wants in life.

Dexter is superior in numerous ways to the idle rich he had grown up admiring; ironically, however, he wants his children to be children of social privilege. Dexter wants them to enjoy what he perceives to be the beauty, glamour, and romance of upper-class wealth.

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