American Culture

For many international students, adjusting to American culture can be difficult and at times frustrating. American customs and values might be very different from those of your home country, and you might find them confusing. You will probably want to familiarize yourself with American culture before your departure, in order to make the transition as easy as possible antenaqq.

Values

  • Independence. Americans strongly believe in the concept of individualism. They consider themselves to be separate individuals who are in control of their own lives, rather than members of a close-knit, interdependent family, religious group, tribe, nation, or other group.
  • Equality. The American Declaration of Independence states that “all [people] are created equal,” and this belief is deeply embedded in their cultural values. Americans believe that all people are of equal standing, and are therefore uncomfortable with overt displays of respect such as being bowed to antenaqq.
  • Informality. This belief in equality causes Americans to be rather informal in their behavior towards other people. Don’t be surprised if store clerks and waiters introduce themselves by their first names. Many people visiting the US are surprised by the informality of American speech, dress, and posture. Don’t mistake this for rudeness or irreverence; it’s just a part of their culture!
  • Directness. Americans tend to value, frankness and openness in their dealings with other people. They believe that conflicts and disagreements are best solved by means of forthright discussion among the people involved. Americans believe that if someone has a problem with someone else, they should tell the person clearly and directly in order to come up with a solution to the problem.

U.S. Holidays and Customs to Know

One fun way to learn about a culture is to participate in its traditions. Here are a few key holidays that Americans celebrate throughout the country:

spot_img

Explore more

spot_img

Korean Painter Chang Ucchin Finds Nobility in Quotidian, Fleeting Moments

Speaking to avant-garde music devotees in Germany in 1984, composer Morton Feldman delivered a mischievous provocation, almost a warning. “The people who you think...

Finnegan Shannon’s Exhibition on a Conveyor Belt Alleviates Museum Fatigue

Art museums have developed a reputation for inducing a particular kind of exhaustion. Navigating crowds in order to get a glimpse at masterpieces, feeling overstimulated...

Nicholas Galanin’s Pointed Public Sculpture Inspires Glorious Noise in New York

The children playing by the 1920s-era carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park had no idea what was about to fill their ears when guitar tones...

Chinese Ink Master Liu Kuo-sung Paints the Moon Without Using a Brush

Some artists, for good reason, hesitate to reveal their tricks, so as to avoid any chance of diminishing their work’s mystery. But learning how...

Shilpa Gupta Gives Voice to Silence and Resilience

Those haunting words open two New York shows devoted to Shilpa Gupta, a Mumbai-based artist who has taken over Tanya Bonakdar Gallery in Chelsea as...

Pussy Riot Retrospective Proves Why the Group’s Activism Should Be in...

Pussy Riot is generally referred to as a punk rock band and performance art ensemble. But at least as it appears in Montreal, the...

Juana Valdés’s Sculptures and Installations Address the Complex Struggle of Global Displacement

Time and tide wait for none, they say. But art can direct those unrelenting forces to its own expressive purpose. That is the insistent...

Tishan Hsu’s New Works Ask: Which Orifice Is This?

Which orifice am I looking at?” is a question you’ll likely find yourself asking as you explore Tishan Hsu’s latest show at Vienna Secession. It’s a curious query...