The 21st Century American
The traits of the typical American have changed drastically throughout the years. Americans have become different in many ways from when they officially became independent in 1776 to the present time in 2001. America is strong, powerful, and influential. Americans exemplify positive values, selflessness, hospitality, and the American way of life. Our values often differ from values of other countries due to cultural contrasts such as with religious, racial, and education issues. We give much more freedom than many other countries do to those of different races and religions. Also, we hold education in a much higher regard than other countries. It is these differences that sometimes make our country seem more appealing to those of foreign lands. Our common American values bind us together as one unit.
Americans are often stereotyped as living a fast paced working environment in which they eat fast food and drive fast cars. Some of the aspects of American culture which are typical are: pizza, jeans, sunglasses, baseball hats, name brand clothing, tattoos, cellular phones, bagels, and bottled water. The Popular culture that has developed in America has had a major influence on cultures in countries all over the world. Cell phones have become popular in Europe; name brand clothing has taken off in Asia, and McDonald’s restaurants exist all over the globe.
While the American can be looked at as a singular stereotypical entity, it is important to realize the many differences that exist between Americans living in different regions of the country. When people who have lived in America all their lives travel to a different part of the country, they are often just as amazed at the differences in culture as people are who come to America from foreign countries. For Instance, a woman who is a New England native that travels south to North Carolina for the first time will be shocked at the cultural differences she encounters. The New Englander will discover that the natives of North Carolina speak different, eat differently, and even act differently. She discovers what is referred to as ‘Southern hospitality’ when she interacts with people who exhibit a sense of kindness and manners far beyond that of which she is accustomed. On the menu at restaurants she will see items she is unfamiliar with, such as: grits, pigs feet, cheesy westerns, and chicken fried steak.
A culture in America that has arguably the most distinct differences is that of the Creoles living in Louisiana. Individuals who visit Louisiana for the first time are sure to be amazed at the extremely different culture of the Creoles. The Creoles eat food completely unique such as: jambalaya, crawfish, gumbo, and shrimp et tu fait. The most significant difference in the Creole culture is the fact that they speak Creole, which is a combination of French, English, and their own unique words.
Immigrants from foreign countries have and continue to move to America in...