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Old 01-05-2012, 08:45 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,344,192 times
Reputation: 11862

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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielsa1775 View Post
I have noticed that only a very small % of the US population actually nominate their ancestory as american on their census.

Im of mixed English, Irish and German ansctory, my english born mum and gernman born grandmother are still alive today, ive being to all three places but have no real interest in retruning.

For the record on every census ive completed i have recorded my ancestory as Australian.
Many in the South do. I think most Australians can trace their pre-Australian ancestry pretty easily. Even Anglo or Irish Aussies have a relative somewhere not born in Australia within a couple of generations.
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Old 01-06-2012, 07:24 AM
 
Location: Earth
24,639 posts, read 24,813,489 times
Reputation: 11318
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooseketeer View Post
Thanks. Have a fabulous time in Thailand, enjoy the diving ! Green with envy as usual by the way ! I always think I am lucky with my travels but you take the biscuit Darling !
I think we have alternate schedules providing a lot of envy for the both of us.
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Old 01-06-2012, 11:25 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 74,212,583 times
Reputation: 36087
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooseketeer View Post

What is wrong with simply saying "I am descended from Scottish people?". Is that just not romantic enough ?
It's not concise enough. Why clutter our common everyday communications with paragraph after paragraph of footnotes. Everybody knows what an American means when he says "I am Scottish" without filling the simple statement with disclaimers and qualifiers.

In America, "I am Scottish" means my ancestors came from Scotland, irrespective of whether it was my parents or my great great great grandparents who came from Scotland. But, "I am from Scotland" means that I am, or was, of that nationality during my lifetime, and my early upbringing reflected the characteristics of modern Scottish culture.

I think Americans pretty much understand that distinction. Everybody knows what a "French Canadian" is. It is not necessary to say "Canadians whose ancestors were French people", in order to avoid ruffling the feathers of Europeans.

Look. My mother was born in Lithuania and died in the USA at the age of 98. When she was 97, she was neither Lithuanian nor American, in terms of the living culture of those two countries in 2006. She didn't even tweet. She still lived in the depression and the second world war in terms of how her life was shaped and the way she structured her priorities. She would have felt just as comfortable, or just as uncomfortable, coping with life in the 21st century, whether she was in Lithuania or the USA. What would it matter if she said (or tweeted) "I am Lithuanian" or "I am American"? She was neither, as she had little in common with today's modern culture in either country, if that is the criterion by which you wish to define one's national affiinity. Modern Lithanians and modern Americans have more in common with each other, than my mother had with either of them. Her culture and her nature were better explained by "I'm 98 years old". It is not surprising that she is "not like" modern Lithuanians.

Last edited by jtur88; 01-06-2012 at 11:56 AM..
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Old 01-06-2012, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Minnysoda
8,619 posts, read 8,523,848 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the nameless View Post
Anyone not interested in traveling to their ancestral country?
Been there done that.. Everyone I'm related to there is trying to come here They still crap in holes in the ground for crying out loud!!!So much for a super power country!
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Old 01-06-2012, 07:14 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,344,192 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by my54ford View Post
Been there done that.. Everyone I'm related to there is trying to come here They still crap in holes in the ground for crying out loud!!!So much for a super power country!
Are you talking about China? They all want to come to America?
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Old 01-10-2012, 06:34 PM
 
3 posts, read 23,106 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooseketeer View Post
Being a Mutt I have a few "ancestral" countries . I have visited them all and enjoyed them all but the fact that an accident of birth meant my ancestors came from there centuries ago had nothing to do with either visit or enjoyment. I have no interest in my own genealogy , I find other people's far more interesting. As an Archaeologist ALL of us have fascinating ancestral history, mine is no more special than anyone else.

I am interested in recent family history because it still means something but once you go beyond a few generations they stop being anything to do with me as such and just become part of general history IMO.


I always find it funny when I hear Americans say : "I am Welsh, Scottish, Irish, Lithuanian, Finnish, German" etc.. when they are nothing of the sort. Someone in your distant family having come off the boat in NY in 1755 or 1823 from Ireland, Wales or Scotland does not make you Irish, Scottish or Welsh. It always amuses the Brits.


If you were not born and brought up in those countries, living in those places, eating the authentic food, listening to the authentic music, observing the same cultural mores, habits and rituals and if you were born and brought up somewhere else then you are a product of your upbringing not your distant DNA relations.


I have never heard anyone apart from Americans ever do this before.

I have Scottish, Irish, German, English , Italian and Gypsy blood in me and I am French by birth, English by having lived here most of my life and I am none of these IMO. What makes me relate to the first 5 of those nationalities is my having lived in those countries and acquired some cultural understanding of their cultures.

France and England are probably the closest I have to belonging to "anyone" but even then I seem to fit nowhere and everywhere at the same time.

My Ancestors are no more fascinating than my neighbour's in my opinion. We all have our stories.
Well said. I never understood why Americans do that nonsense.

An editor of a magazine made an excellent point:

Quote:
"Just because your genetics show you came from a place, should that mean you can lay claim to that group of people or place now?"
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:16 AM
 
Location: New York
1,339 posts, read 2,252,594 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chielgirl View Post
I'd recommend that you go to the library and get a DK (Eyewitness) travel book and maybe one or two others and read about Switzerland.
Then, look online for photos of places like Lauterbrunned (perhaps my favorite place), the major cities, and just search around.
You'll be pleasantly surprised at the beauty and cows.
I love the DK books AND Switzerland.... I'll be there next week ooh the chocolate, cheese, fresh air, mountain walks and even the church bells !!!
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:30 AM
 
Location: New York
1,339 posts, read 2,252,594 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooseketeer View Post


I always find it funny when I hear Americans say : "I am Welsh, Scottish, Irish, Lithuanian, Finnish, German" etc.. when they are nothing of the sort. Someone in your distant family having come off the boat in NY in 1755 or 1823 from Ireland, Wales or Scotland does not make you Irish, Scottish or Welsh. It always amuses the Brits.


I have never heard anyone apart from Americans ever do this before.
I have to agree, it amuses me too. I met someone in the US who decided he was going to back to his roots and would only date Italian girls... he has never been to Italy, doesn't speak Italian and probably couldn't place it on a map, (his grandfather was born in Naples but he moved here as a babe in arms...) he might as well have the stars and stripes tattooed on his forehead.... he is 100% American. When we met and I asked him if he was from new York he said yes but I'm Italian American... I just though 'no actually you are a bit sad and trying to make yourself look more interesting....'

My fathers family were from Lancashire, England since as far back as 1700 ish, My grandfather was Irish. I would never say I was Irish/English. I am simply English. I was born there and lived there until I was 35.
My husband has a British passport/citizenship after living there for 8 years and then marrying me.... if anyone asks he says he is Swiss.

Is it that Americans don't think being simply 'American' is interesting ??
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:32 AM
 
Location: On the brink of WWIII
21,093 posts, read 23,892,293 times
Reputation: 7812
Quote:
Originally Posted by the nameless View Post
Anyone not interested in traveling to their ancestral country?

I see mine everyday.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 22,010,926 times
Reputation: 19908
Quote:
Originally Posted by swisswife View Post
I have to agree, it amuses me too. I met someone in the US who decided he was going to back to his roots and would only date Italian girls... he has never been to Italy, doesn't speak Italian and probably couldn't place it on a map, (his grandfather was born in Naples but he moved here as a babe in arms...) he might as well have the stars and stripes tattooed on his forehead.... he is 100% American. When we met and I asked him if he was from new York he said yes but I'm Italian American... I just though 'no actually you are a bit sad and trying to make yourself look more interesting....'

My fathers family were from Lancashire, England since as far back as 1700 ish, My grandfather was Irish. I would never say I was Irish/English. I am simply English. I was born there and lived there until I was 35.
My husband has a British passport/citizenship after living there for 8 years and then marrying me.... if anyone asks he says he is Swiss.

Is it that Americans don't think being simply 'American' is interesting ??



Maybe the relative "youth" of the Nation means they feel they must have some older lineagle to belong to , a way to buy into a romanticised heritage perhaps. Something of longer continuity than what maybe they consider too short a personal history on American shores.

I don't get it either. I think it puzzles most Europeans but I suppose whatever floats their boats.


As mentioned before I tend to find other people's genealogy more interesting than mine. I suppose not being someone for whom roots mean a great deal I lack that desire to explore my own story in depth. I am fascinated by more recent personal history because I see it as living history but anything beyond great-grand parents and I lose interest.



As an Archaeologist I find interest in history in general and do not see mine as more interesting or fascinating than anybody else. Because it has to do with me does not make special in my eyes. Special is as Special does so to speak.

It is a bit like the idea some people have that country they "belong" to is somehow better than others because an accident of birth meant they happened to be born there. I never was into flags and waving patriotism, and never into personal heraldry either.
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