Summary and Response
Growing up in America one doesn’t really question our customs or the daily lives of the people here. Everyone kind of has a precedent for our everyday live and no one really tries to break the mold on that. Poranee Natadecha- Sonsel argues that Americans are unlike many other countries because they have a certain individualism about everything they do in their culture. In her article, “The Young, the Rich, and the Famous: Individualism as American Cultural Value”, the author reiterates over and over again that the way Americans value their individualism really impresses her. She names a few examples of American individualism such as conversational topics, privacy, and family life. Ms. Sponsel further evaluates each subtopic thus shedding more light on her argument. One of the author’s many arguments about American individualism is how they converse with other people. She notes that when asked the time old question of, “How are you?” , Americans most of the time have one set response only and don’t reveal much information about how they really are that day. Ms. Sponsel seems taken back by how Americans don’t really appear to care about how the other person is feeling and just blurt out the automated response of, “I’m good, how are you?’. She often references the customs of her culture back in Thailand and how very different it is from American culture. She notes how open they are with everyone they talk to and pretty much tell their whole life story to everyone they meet. America’s individualism set’s them apart from many other countries, not just Thailand and every country has their own way of doing things. Ms. Sponsel is a well educated anthropologist, so it is her job to study a culture and watch how it operates which is why America’s such individual culture really shocks her. America has a culture unlike any other where privacy is a main component. She emphasizes that even from a...
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