Our current society is part of the post-modern era. Below, please add appropriate descriptions, pictures (with citations), links, and another information that will help us develop an understanding of our American Identity. Once we have that, we will begin exploring how we established that identity.

What is identity?

Identity separates one person or thing from another; it is who or what you are.
Our identity is how an outsider can easily identify us.
Identity is the individual characteristics by which a thing or person is recognized or known.

What are our values?
“In America, success is measured by the accumulation of power, status, wealth and property. What you already have is not as important as what you continue to accumulate.”
I found this quote on a website and I think it is a great debate topic. It makes America seem like a very materialistic culture. Some would disagree and say that America’s real values should be what we can contribute to society aside from materials and money. Our success is a measure of how we use whatever resources we have to contribute to American society.

-Family, money, religion, freedom, love, success.

Some of our values are valuing individualism, achievement and success, change and progress, ethical equality, effort and optimism, and efficiency. (See site below)


Individual Freedom, Choice in Education, The Family, Privacy

What is important to us?
To me, the most important part of American society is having the most amount of money in the least amount of time possible. Also things like family and security are a big part of our everyday life.
-Education and a good work ethic are important to us growing up so that we will be financially successful in the future.


What is the definition of the American Dream?
A unitary definition does not exist–the American dream probably has a different meaning to every US citizen. For some it is the dream of freedom and equality, for others it is the dream of a fulfilled life or even the dream of fame and wealth.


Hard work and striving is the key to success. Many feel that those who show effort, optimism, and perseverance are the ones that are worthy of fulfilling their dreams. The great American Dream of fame and fortune comes to those who work hard and never give up.


What kinds of things make up our identity?
The American flag — http://www-raider.stjohns.k12.fl.us/teachers/rizzuts/01A91BC8-0118C716.0/american-flag.gif

What kind of people make up our identity? (how do we differ from other societies)
"...Americans have defined themselves not by their racial, religious, and ethnic identity but by their common values and belief in individual freedom."

"There simply is no one picture of a “typical” American. From the powdered-wigged Founding Fathers to the multiracial golf champion Tiger Woods, Americans share a common identity grounded in the freedom — consistent always with respecting the freedom of others — to live as they choose."

America is the “Melting Pot” of the world; here more than anywhere in the world there is a diverse range of ethnicities living in one country.

An aspect of American society that is unique to Americans and a few other parts of the world is the family. The nuclear family structure (parents and children) is so alien to most cultures in the world that it is often misunderstood. The main purpose of the American family is to bring about the happiness of each individual family member. The traditional family values include love and respect for parents, as well as for all members of the family.
However, the emphasis on the individual and his/her right to happiness can be confusing. It allows children to disagree, even argue with their parents. In many cultures, this would be seen as a lack of love and would be disciplined. In America, however, it is simply exercising our independence and freedom.

What actions/behavior make up our society?
Most Americans work hard on the week days and look forward to the weekends. http://www.immihelp.com/newcomer/american-culture-and-behavior.html

Some actions/behaviors that make up our society are simply our day to day daily routines and rituals.

We live in a capitalist economy so we are raised to work hard in order to achieve success.

What makes us different from the rest of the world? (the way we dress, language, food, etc.)
What makes us powerful?

What are the American values based on education?

What makes family values in America differ from family lifestyles in other countries?


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