U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > World Forums > Africa
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 06-30-2018, 07:25 PM
 
1,748 posts, read 632,882 times
Reputation: 1838

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by caribny View Post
In fact I would say the complete opposite. Old world cultures have traditions that go back thousands of years and fixed identities associated with it. Very deep senses of traditions and a defensiveness towards new groups arriving to transform this. Look at how immigrants assimilate in the Americas with what happens in the Old world. And in fact Asia is even worse at this than is Europe.


The Americas are a set of new cultures, still evolving. This is why they are more innovative. Imagine a world without the USA. How modern would it be? One cannot escape the grasp of US culture. Note that immigrants, including nonwhite immigrants are very much a part of this process. Silicon Valley is packed with assorted Asian immigrants virtually running the show. Dig into American culture and you will see influences from every corner of the globe, yet these are considered American.

I can say similar for Brazil, not technologically innovative, but certainly culturally. Canada is so diverse and multicultural that no one even knows what Canadian cultures or identities are anymore. The influence of the Caribbean in global music is way more than one would expect given the smallness of these islands.

People of the Americas are way more individualistic than those of Europe/Africa/Asia. In fact we are normally seen as too individualistic and less concerned for the communal welfare. Accusations of excessive materialism growing out of this individualism in fact are quite valid.

And clearly this dynamism of the Americas must appeal. Go anywhere and US influences on local pop culture are very apparent, and at times even dominant. I don't think that one can say the same for Russia. And even British influence come from an era now long gone.

Americans value privacy, but not individuality. I'd say individuality is considered weird in the US :-). That is not right or wrong, that is just how it is. Alexis de Tocqueville (who generally liked the US) noticed it in the 1830s, and many other European people had the same impression. You are free to be anything you want in the US, including an individualist, but that particular choice is not valued. Ask high school students, they are truthful about everything :-). American dynamism is very appealing, yes. But dynamism and individualism are apples and oranges, they are not related.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 07-02-2018, 10:32 AM
 
Location: Maryland
18,627 posts, read 16,476,991 times
Reputation: 6351
Quote:
Originally Posted by caribny View Post
Individuals operate within the context of their societies. The Old World is about conformity. So the personalities which evolve conform to the group, even if they aren't conscious of it.

Its even interesting to see how immigrants from a nation who migrate to Europe eventually come to differ from those who migrate to North America. Those to Europe are pressured to conform to local culture. European countries even hand these immigrants handbooks with rules that they must conform to. Those to Canada and the USA do as they wish and assimilate as much as they feel a need to.

As an example of this. Virtually every company in the USA gives callers two language options when they wish to obtain information. Yes the famous "press 1 for Spanish, stay on the line for English" In NYC and many other parts of the USA its the LAW that voting instructions should be available in the dominant immigrant languages spoken, in addition to English.

Is this possible in Europe? I will not even discuss Eastern Europe which is quite xenophobic, even as people from those nations crowd those of western Europe and have migrated also to the Americas and Australia.
I've noticed this among African and Caribbean migrants and their descendants to the UK and USA/Canada. There are differences among Jamaican Americans, Jamaican Canadians and Jamaican Brits for example.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-02-2018, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Maryland
18,627 posts, read 16,476,991 times
Reputation: 6351
Quote:
Originally Posted by elnrgby View Post
Americans value privacy, but not individuality. I'd say individuality is considered weird in the US :-). That is not right or wrong, that is just how it is. Alexis de Tocqueville (who generally liked the US) noticed it in the 1830s, and many other European people had the same impression. You are free to be anything you want in the US, including an individualist, but that particular choice is not valued. Ask high school students, they are truthful about everything :-). American dynamism is very appealing, yes. But dynamism and individualism are apples and oranges, they are not related.
America is all about individualism. You are so wrong. An example, in America it's not unusual for a person to not speak to their mother for years. That is simply unheard of in much of the world
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-02-2018, 11:43 AM
 
Location: West of Louisiana, East of New Mexico
2,536 posts, read 2,038,990 times
Reputation: 5830
It makes sense for American culture to continuously evolve at a faster rate than Old World nations. You can't really tell the story of America without immigrants. If you removed west African (morphing into black American), German and British culture from the U.S., it would look like a totally different country with greatly altered history. If you remove Pakistani/Indian and Nigerian culture from the overall history of the UK, very little would change relatively speaking.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-02-2018, 01:38 PM
 
1,748 posts, read 632,882 times
Reputation: 1838
Quote:
Originally Posted by EdwardA View Post
America is all about individualism. You are so wrong. An example, in America it's not unusual for a person to not speak to their mother for years. That is simply unheard of in much of the world

It is heard of, in my own family back in East-south-central Europe (for about 23 years and ongoing). When you look at provincial peasants anywhere (incl Europe), many (not all) of them do have an amorphous group personality, but as soon as you climb even slightly along the education ladder in Europe, you run into very distinctive personalities, whose mind is an unpredictable mix and match of ideas, often contradictory, constantly scanning and critically examining the world. You don't see that much in the US.


This thing about "popularity" in school, and bullying of kids who are behavioral outliers - that is unheard of in European schools. The obsession with "keeping up with the Joneses" (ie, being like everybody else, but better at it if possible) is also an American invention, and is very prevalent in the US. Americans seem to be moving through life with a checklist of stuff to do, the same stuff that everyone in their social group does, and they do not care for or value anything outside the checklist... Europeans generally aren't like that, they value living in the moment, whatever kind of moment might present itself.

Last edited by elnrgby; 07-02-2018 at 02:54 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-03-2018, 12:26 AM
 
7,454 posts, read 5,961,425 times
Reputation: 3804
Quote:
Originally Posted by elnrgby View Post
Americans value privacy, but not individuality..
The favorite word in the USA is "I". Sacrificing for societal good isnt an American thing which is why even though this is a rich country our public services are mediocre. "If it does benefit me I don't care". That is the American thought process. I don't think that Europeans are so bold as to voice this view so openly. It is easy for an American to self promote. Much harder for a European to do so.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-03-2018, 12:28 AM
 
7,454 posts, read 5,961,425 times
Reputation: 3804
Quote:
Originally Posted by EdwardA View Post
America is all about individualism. You are so wrong. An example, in America it's not unusual for a person to not speak to their mother for years. That is simply unheard of in much of the world
It is not unusual for Americans to take their parents to court over monetary issues. I think this would horrify people elsewhere, even in other societies in the Americas. Definitely so in the Old World where communal attitudes are more common, even in Europe when compared to the USA.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-03-2018, 12:33 AM
 
7,454 posts, read 5,961,425 times
Reputation: 3804
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgn2013 View Post
It makes sense for American culture to continuously evolve at a faster rate than Old World nations. You can't really tell the story of America without immigrants. If you removed west African (morphing into black American), German and British culture from the U.S., it would look like a totally different country with greatly altered history. If you remove Pakistani/Indian and Nigerian culture from the overall history of the UK, very little would change relatively speaking.
Very true which is why immigrants in the USA have very different identities than those in Europe. Over there they are forced to play up to the hosts. There is a highly defined national culture and identity and immigrants must adhere to that......or else."Britishness" or "Frenchness" isnt about diversity even though some might pretend that it is.


There was a young Egyptian working in a deli. I used to think he was Puerto Rican and told him so. He was so happy that he thanked me. I then realized that to him being a Puerto Rican was his notion of what being "American" was.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-03-2018, 12:37 AM
 
7,454 posts, read 5,961,425 times
Reputation: 3804
Quote:
Originally Posted by elnrgby View Post
along the education ladder in Europe, you run into very distinctive personalities, whose mind is an unpredictable mix and match of ideas,

I suspect that your image of the USA comes from the media. I don't understand this "conformity" and lack pf diverse personalities that you speak of. The behavior of children can never be a predictor of how a society operates. I can assure you that bullying of kids who are outliers by other kids is certainly a feature of Europe as you claim that it is in the USA. Kids from immigrant families have much to say on this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-03-2018, 05:11 AM
 
1,748 posts, read 632,882 times
Reputation: 1838
Quote:
Originally Posted by caribny View Post
I suspect that your image of the USA comes from the media. I don't understand this "conformity" and lack pf diverse personalities that you speak of. The behavior of children can never be a predictor of how a society operates. I can assure you that bullying of kids who are outliers by other kids is certainly a feature of Europe as you claim that it is in the USA. Kids from immigrant families have much to say on this.



No, my image of the US comes from living in the US more than half of my life. I was born in a south-eastern Europeam country, where I lived for my first 23 years. During that time, I also traveled a lot throughout Western Europe. I have been living in the US from the age of 23 to 58 (my present age) without maintaining contact with my country of origin, and actively avoiding people from my former country who live in the US (the country had a civil war, and I never know what kind of person I might be dealing with, what kind of possible hostility, so I find it safest to keep away from them. Only the 1960s-early 80s rock music from my former country triggers a bit of nostalgia; otherwise I never even think about it :-). My entire family had left the place (living now in various parts of the world), I have not been there since 1986, and do not intend to go back to visit.


My personal outlook is entirely global, I like the way business is done in the US, I like the personal freedom and privacy that the US offers. However, in terms of close relationships, (eg, in terms of boyfriends and close friends), I somehow always end up hanging out with some type of an immigrant or visitor to the US (not from my own country of origin, but from some continent other than America), simply because their personalities are more interesting.


Teenagers are not children, they are young adults. High school is a more truthful and more expressive version of adulthood. I have gone to school in Europe, and can fully assure you that the high school cliques and bullying of the kind that I read about, hear about, or see for myself in the US teenagers, absolutely did NOT exist where I went to school. Also, the meaning of the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" (or anything similar) was unknown to me before I moved to the US. Everything I am talking about is from my direct personal experience (which agrees with what other Europeans have noticed).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > World Forums > Africa
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top