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The American National character - Реферат

на тему:
The American National character
1. The basic features of the American culture
а) American national character in popular culture
б) Character of the peasants
2. The interesting parties of the American character
а) American Sexual Character
б) The other features of character
American society seems to be much more informal than the British and, in some ways, is characterized by less social distinction. Students do not rise when a teacher enters the room. One does not always address a person by his title, such as "Major" or "General" or "Doctor" in the case of a holder of a Doctor of Philosophy degree. The respectful "Sir" is not always used in the northern and western parts of the country.
However, it is best to use a person's title when first meeting him/her, and then allow the person to tell you how he/she wishes to be called.
They use first names when calling each other, slap on the back, joke and are much freer in their speech, which is more slangy than the conventional British English. You will often hear the word "Hi" (a form of greeting among friends) used instead of the usual "Hello," and "Howdy" instead of "How do you do?"
Those who don't easily show these signs of friendship are called "snooty" or "snobbish." In contrast, people who show such simple signs of friendship, particularly to their own economic and social inferiors, are praised as "regular guys," or as "truly democratic." As a description of character, democratic is generally used to signify that a person of high social or economic status acts in such a way that his or her inferiors are not reminded of their inferiority.
Yet, in spite of all the informality, Americans, even in the way they address each other, show consciousness of social distinction. For example, one is likely to use somewhat more formal language when talking to superiors. While the informal "Hello" is an acceptable greeting from employee to employer, the employee is more apt to say "Hello, Mr. Ferguson," while the employer may reply "Hello, Jim." Southerners make a point of saying "Yes, sir," or "Yes, Ma'am," or "No, sir," or "No, Ma'am," when talking to an older person or a person in a position of authority. While this is good form all over the United Stales, "Yes. Mr. Weston" or "No, Mrs. Baker" is somewhat more common in a similar situation in the North or West.
1. The basic features of the American culture
а) American national character in popular culture
"The culture of the United States is a Western culture, and has been developing since long before the United States became a country. Its chief early influence was British culture, due to colonial ties with the British that spread the English language, legal system and other cultural inheritances. Other important influences came from other parts of Europe, especially countries from which large numbers immigrated such as Ireland, Germany, Poland, and Italy; the Native American peoples; Africa, especially the western part, from which came the ancestors of most African Americans; and young groups of immigrants. American culture also has shared influence on the cultures of its neighbors in the New World.
The United States has traditionally been known as a melting pot, but recent academic opinion is tending towards cultural diversity, pluralism and the image of a salad bowl rather than a melting pot.
Due to the extent of American culture there are many integrated but unique subcultures within the United States. The culutral affliations an individual in the United States may have commonly depend on social class, political orientation and a multitude of demogrpahic charateristics such as race, ethnicity, sex and sexual orientation. The strongest influences on American culture came from northern European cultures, most prominently from Germany, Ireland and England. [2] It is, however, paramount to remember that there are great differences within American culutre which should therefore under no circumstance be seen as one large homogenous subject.
The American state of California (especially the Hollywood region) is home to a thriving motion picture industry, with prominent film studios such as Warner Brothers, Paramount, and MGM creating dozens of multi-million dollar films every year that are enjoyed around the world. American actors are often among the world's most popular and easily identified celebrities. It's worth noting that Hollywood also tends to attract many immigrant actors and directors from around the world, many of whom, such as actor Russell Crowe or director Ang Lee become just as famous and successful as American-born stars.
The United States was a leading pioneer of T.V. as an entertainment medium, and the tradition remains strong to this day. Many American television sitcoms dramas game shows and reality shows remain very popular both in the US and abroad. Animation is a popular US entertainment medium as well, both on the large and small screen. The characters created by Walt Disney and Warner Brothers animation studios remain very popular. In music, the United States has pioneered many distinct genres, such as country and western, jazz, rock music, hip hop and gospel. African-American cultural influences play a particularly prominent role in many of these traditions.
б) Character of the peasants
American farmers of today lead vastly different lives from those of their grandparents. Machines have eliminated much backbreaking farm work. Farmers use machines to help them plow, plant seeds, harvest crops, and deliver their products to market. Many farms have conveyor systems so that the farmer no longer has to shovel feed to farm animals. Milking machines make morning and evening chores easier. In the home, farm families may have all the comforts and conveniences of city people. In the 1900's, the automobile, telephone, radio, and television have brought U.S. farm families into close contact with the rest of the world.
The steady decline in the percentage of the country's rural population has slowed since 1970. Although many people continued to move away from rural areas, others chose to move into rural towns and farm communities. Many of the newcomers wanted to escape the overcrowding, pollution, crime, and other problems that are part of life in urban areas and to take advantage of benefits of country living. Rural areas have lower crime rates and less pollution than urban areas. They are also far less noisy and crowded.
Because of their small populations, rural communities collect less tax revenues than urban communities do, and they generally cannot provide the variety of services that