Dominant Culture Values
As citizens in the United States, we all have values in our country and the influence on our lives. Being part of the dominant culture, these values directly relate to my everyday life. We live by cultural patterns that will always be what is considered to be the ‘norm’ in our country, but to an outsider, it may be a shock. Five values in United States culture are success, work, equality, freedom, and patriotism. Most Americans live by these values and incorporate them in to how they live every day. In our competitive society, personal achievement is based on success. This is measured by accomplishments. Success emphasizes rewards. Failure is often viewed as a character defect in the United States. Americans also value busyness, speed, and action. The frontier idea of work before play is very important for Americans. A person’s worth is measured by his or her performance. Our history has stressed equal opportunity for all, especially economic opportunity. Americans also seek freedom. Having individual confidence is valued in our country. Freedom enters into free enterprise, progress, individual choice, and equality. It has not meant the absence of social control. Finally, Americans feel some sense of loyalty to their country, its national symbols, and its history. Symbols such as our National Anthem and the Statue of liberty show the pride we have in our country, and I common bond throughout all citizens in America. Other countries will be the first to recognize the nationalism we obtain to our country. When visiting another country, an American citizen may realize that that country’s values are totally different than ours. Each country has their own cultural identity. This identity “is formed in a process that results from membership in a particular culture, and it involves learning about and accepting the traditions, heritage, language, religion, ancestry, aesthetics, thinking patterns, and social structures of a culture.” (Lustig,...
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