Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Really pleased to see the posts made. We can have a good discussion based on these. Well done

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Crevecouer's ideas in Modern America

From 'letters from an American Farmer' Letter III, pg 44, Crevecouer wrote about what it is to be an American, "The American is a new man, who acts upon new principles; he must therefore entertain new ideas and form new opinions."

Madonna ( is the perfect example of the themes protrayed in Crevecouer's book. In 'Letters From An American Farmer' Crevecouer talks about the ideology of noveity in America, For example, The New World, new oppotunities. And also the idea of starting a fresh and be whoever you wanted to be. This is shown in today society throught people like Madonna and Lady GaGa. Where Most American's are very fickle, Getting tired of the same thing, very quickly. Espically within Adderlessance. This is were the idea of Reinventing one's idenity over and over again. Like many Pop icons like Madonna have. Early Madonna was Very pop and fresh! Reinventing herself she became edgy, as seen in her infomous 'Vogue' video. America is fasninated with Orignial ideas and people starting a new, as it is the basses of what their country was founded apon.

De Crevecoeur Today!

Ricky Gervais is one of the worlds most famous comedians. However before he made it in America he was known as 'that guy who plays David Brent in The Office and does that dance.'

So why not just stay in England?

Because now we know him as an actor, writer, producer, comedian, host and author.
America accepted the 'David Brent' character and created their own version of The Office, therefore making Ricky Gervais a household name.
He has won countless awards including 4 Emmys and 7 BAFTA's to name a few. He became the first person to host the Golden Globes (award show in America), and he currently has an animation series of his podcast with Karl Pilkington and Stephan Merchant.

According to De Crevecoeur in the 18th Century the only chance of 'making it' in England is if you have good family connections, have a title or go to the right school.
"It is not composed as in Europe,of great Lords who possess everything and of a herd of people who have nothing. Here there are no aristocratical families, no courts, no kings, no bishops..." (pg40)

De Crevecoeur believed that America held a dream that England didn't. America gave you freedom and self sufficiency whereas in England you are put into a class and can work hard for no reward. "...they receive ample rewards for their labours." (pg43)

Many people still believe this theory today. There is a better life for them in America then in England.
Ricky Gervais is one of many English people who are more recognised after going to America e.g. Hugh Laurie, Helen Mirren, and Richard Branson. And not just the English but others from all over the world, Nicole Kidman, Enrique Iglesias and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
"He is an American, who, leaving behind all his antiend prejudices and manners, recieves new ones from the new mode of life he has embraced, the new goverment he obeys and the new rank he holds. He becomes an American by being recieved in the broad lap of our great alma mater. Here indivduals of all nations are into a new race of men, whose labors and posterity will one day cause great changes in the world." (pg44)

"This the work of my countrymen ... they brought along with them their national genius, to which they principally owe what liberty they enjoy and what substance they possess" This extract from De Crevecours 'Letters from an American farmer' touches upon the transission and progression that has been made in America by the setterlers. It portrays the popular belief that anything is possible in America.
If America wasn't founded the way it was then maybe it wouldn't be possible for anyone there no matter what background,race,socail class or gender they are to acheive anything.
One famous person in America who is truely living the american dream is chat showhost Oprah Winfrey.Born out of wedlock she was raised by her grandmother in impovrished conditions,spent time in juveile detention home.She now is now is one of the richest people in America.

De Crevecoeur and expansion of materialism

The website which I chose to discuss which is about the new and expectional as typically american is the 'Macy's' store website. The reason I believe for this is the founder of Macy's - Rowland Hussey Macy started off as someone wanting to start their own business, and it ultimately turning into a multimillion pount department store. This is much like in Crevecoeur Letters from an American Farmer;
"Here he see's the industry of his native country displayed in a new manner, and traces, in their works the embroyes of all the arts, sciences, and ingenuity, which flourish in Europe" This backs up Macy's store as on the homepage of the website there are many things being advertised, not just one object such as clothes.

The fact that Macy's store sells many products shows the typical american ideal of always wanting something more, something bigger and better. Also this reflects todays modern day society of greed and always wanting something new and exceptional.

Futhermore another quote from Crevecoeur backs up this idea of the new and exceptional being typically American;
"Here he beholds fair cities, substantial villages, extensive fields, an immense country filled with decent houses, good roads, orchards, meadows and bridges, where, a hundred years ago, all was wild, woody, and uncultivated!" This quote shows the developement of america, if you take this into a modern day view this would be the rapid expansion of materialism and the want for more, thus showing greediness. Typically Americans are always wanting to be bigger and better than the rest of the world.

De Crevecouer and The American Dream.

Opinions vary whether the "American Dream" still exists in America today. The idea that whatever your race, whatever your nationality and whatever your background and upbringing was should never hold you back from reaching your potential and fulfilling your dreams still very much exists in America. A qoute in De Crevecouer's that particually stands out to me and my theme of the American Dream is " When in England he was a mere Englishman... Here the avenues of trade are infinite". This says to me that there are no hold backs in America. The fact that he compares this land with England and "Just Englishman" tells me that he believes America is a greater place and here anybody can be a somebody.

A fictional example that the American Dream is still alive today and backs up De Crevecouer's quote is Anakin Skywalker from Star Wars. Anakin starts off in the first film as a boy slave from Tatooine, but as the films progress, with hard work, respect (to an extent) and showing potential, Anakin grows stronger and stronger, eventually becoming the most powerful Jedi in the galaxy and controlling an empire. Eventhough he uses his power for the dark side, it is a valid example of "rags to riches", as he came from a slave to a ruler, providing support for De Crevecouer's qoute " Here the avenues of trade are infinite".

Another quote that grabbed my attention was from letter five of "Letters from an American Farmer". It said "After many trials, several miscarriages, they succeeded". This quote was talking about fisherman starting off catching smaller fish, but with determination eventually started catching whales. This point is very valid in America today. The topic I have chosen to relate this quote with is the music industry. This is exactly what every up and coming band has to go through in America. Pure hard work and determination, never giving up and grabbing all oppurtunites is the only way to succeed. A perfect example of this is Ozzy Osbourne. Ozzy was born in the UK, and his parents had to constantly work in order to provide for Ozzy and his five siblings. He dropped out of school, got arrested and couldnt pay the fine so spent time in prison. The one passion he had was music, so he created many bands, eventually staying with Black Sabbath. He played every concert he could get his hands on, and his talent soon became reconised through sheer work and became majorly successful in America, spending the majority of his time there. Despite his past, he has still managed to create 9 studio albums and topped the charts on many occassions because he refused to give up. Ozzy Osbourne is a good example of the rags to riches theory and De Crevecoeur quote of " After many trials, several miscarriages, they succeeded". This story proves the point that the American Dream still exists today.

Friday, October 22, 2010

An account of early American settlement by Bartolome de las Casas

Bartolome de las Casas was one of the early settlers of America, a religious man who transcribed much of Chritopher Columbus's journal. Through these journals and his own accounts, Casas was driven to oppose the teatment of Native Americans. His works the 'History of the Indies' is a go-to piece for anybody wishing to understand the impact of settlement in early America on the indigenous population.

Perhaps the most important aspect of Casas's works are his views on Native American society and culture as oppose to his own. There are many extracts worth quoting at length like those wich follow.

''Marriage laws are non-existent men and women alike choose their mates and leave them as they please, without offense, jealousy or anger. They multiply in great abundance; pregnant women work to the last minute and give birth almost painlessly; up the next day, they bathe in the river and are as clean and healthy as before giving birth. If they tire of their men, they give themselves abortions with herbs that force stillbirths, covering their shameful parts with leaves or cotton cloth; although on the whole, Indian men and women look upon total nakedness with as much casualness as we look upon a man's head or at his hands.''

This is useful to understand the stark differences in social standards between European civilisation and Native America, Casas expresses interest in the laid back casual nature whch is apparently alien to him.

''large communal bell-shaped buildings, housing up to 600 people at one time ... made of very strong wood and roofed with palm leaves.... They prize bird feathers of various colors, beads made of fishbones, and green and white stones with which they adorn their ears and lips, but they put no value on gold and other precious things. They lack all manner of commerce, neither buying nor selling, and rely exclusively on their natural environment for maintenance. They are extremely generous with their possessions and by the same token covet the possessions of their friends and expect the same degree of liberality. ...''

This is an interesting portrayel of commune which persisted in American tribes where European settlers valued materialistic posessions and social status. Casas paints a community which values each member and rejects the idea of a social hierarchy to the same extent as Europe.

''Endless testimonies . .. prove the mild and pacific temperament of the natives.... But our work was to exasperate, ravage, kill, mangle and destroy; small wonder, then, if they tried to kill one of us now and then.... The admiral, it is true, was blind as those who came after him, and he was so anxious to please the King that he committed irreparable crimes against the Indians.

Mountains are stripped from top to bottom and bottom to top a thousand times; they dig, split rocks, move stones, and carry dirt on their backs to wash it in the rivers, while those who wash gold stay in the water all the time with their backs bent so constantly it breaks them; and when water invades the mines, the most arduous task of all is to dry the mines by scooping up pansful of water and throwing it up outside....

Thus husbands and wives were together only once every eight or ten months and when they met they were so exhausted and depressed on both sides ... they ceased to procreate. As for the newly born, they died early because their mothers, overworked and famished, had no milk to nurse them, and for this reason, while I was in Cuba, 7000 children died in three months. Some mothers even drowned their babies from sheer desperation.... in this way, husbands died in the mines, wives died at work, and children died from lack of milk . .. and in a short time this land which was so great, so powerful and fertile ... was depopulated. ... My eyes have seen these acts so foreign to human nature, and now I tremble as I write. ...''

Casas shows concern for Native American society and culture through European settlement. Early on in his works he portrays them as peaceful people who live off the land, an example to many. However it seems almost as if Casas displays regret of settlement, European greed and culture had turned these people in to slaves for personal gain. Commerce had robbed the indies of its srenity that drove many, like Casas, to adore.

Casas's books are useful to us in studying the settlemnt of America, not as an advancement in to a new industrial age of international commerce, but as a stark reminder of the cruelty which was displayed and which laid the foundatios of America. It could be argued that America's history has always been a violent one.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


9am - posts from Lara, Tom and Emily; nothing from Grace or Becky.

The topic was to post examples of either a) any account by an early settler to the US or an account by a native American of the same period. It's in the module handbook.

Emily - you did it correctly with John White

Tom - you've given a general survey - not an account by a settler or a native

Lara - you've done the same as Tom

Take a look at the other group's blog

They are no cleverer than you are, they are just reading the instructions properly and everyone is posting in time. This group has got to start doing the same.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Native american tribes

Over four hundred years ago, English colonists trying to settle on Roanoke Island
encountered many Native Americans along the coast. At that time more than thirty
Native American tribes were living in present-day North Carolina. They spoke languages
derived from three language groups, the Siouan, Iroquoian, and Algonquian.
Where did these Native Americans come from? Who were their prehistoric ancestors?
How do we know anything at all about them?
None of the prehistoric Native Americans who lived in North America had developed
any sort of written language. They relied instead on oral traditions, such as storytelling,
to keep records of their origins, myths, and histories. Our present knowledge of
prehistoric inhabitants of this state depends on rare early historical accounts and,
especially, on information gained through archaeology.
Prehistoric Native Americans
Archaeologists can trace the ancestry of Native Americans to at least twelve thousand
years ago, to the time of the last Ice Age in the Pleistocene epoch. During the Ice Age,
ocean levels dropped and revealed land that had
previously been under the Bering Sea. Native
American ancestors walked on that land from
present-day Siberia to Alaska. Evidence suggests
that their population grew rapidly and that they
settled throughout Canada, the Great Plains, and the
Eastern Woodlands, which included the North
Carolina area.
The climate on the eastern seaboard was wetter and
cooler twelve thousand years ago. Many species of
animals roamed the forests and grasslands of our
area, including now extinct examples of elephants
(mastodons), wild horses, ground sloths, and giant
bison. Other animals, now absent from the
Southeast, included moose, caribou, elk, and
Conjectured migration routes of the
first Americans. Courtesy of the N.C.
Office of Archives and History.
2 ©2005 North Carolina Museum of History
Office of Archives and History, N.C. Department of Cultural Resources
Paleo-Indians, as archaeologists call those first people, hunted for these animals in groups
using spears. They used the animals’ meat, skins, and remaining parts for food, clothing,
and other needs. They also spent considerable time gathering wild plant foods and may
have caught shellfish and fish. These first inhabitants of North Carolina were nomads,
which means they moved frequently across the land in search of food and other
Descendants of the Paleo-Indians are called Archaic Indians. They occupied eastern
North America from about 9000 to 2000 B.C. As the Ice Age ended, the types of forests
in the Southeast gradually changed and became more like those of today. Archaic
Indians adapted their techniques of gathering, hunting, and fishing to the environments of
this new Holocene epoch.

This is just a short extract about the native americans settling in North Carolina by Stephen R. Claggett. Here the account tells us that native americans hunted using spears and when they killed an animal they used pretty much all of the animal, not just to eat the meat. One bit of the article that I find most interesting is the animals mentioned in it that we no longer hear about today; "caribou and elk". Futhermore also the three different languages used, Siouan, Iroquoian, and Algonquian. Clearly the article shows us that the native americans were very resourceful and could travel around quite easily as long as they could find animals to kill.

Native Americans Settlement

"Colonial Pennsylvania was a cosmopolitan home to Enlgish, Welsh, Scots-Irish, Germans, French Hugenots, Jews, Dutch and Africans, who colonised the colonised the state amid the Native American population of Lenni Lenage, Shawnee and other tribes. Germans put down roots in the central part of the state; Scots-Irish struggled on the frontier. Most Africans initially arrived as slaves, eventually creatingfree bnlack communities in the C18th after emancipation.

European immigrants to America usually settled in regions according to ethnic and religous affiliations. Ethinicity, language, denominational membership, and kinship all played apart in settlement. Travellers of the same regions and there country of origin often joined together on the journey or settled near relatives or friends.

The first noticable element of this source is the use of the technique of listing, by listing various points the source higlights whats important. First of all is the description of which nationalities settled into America "a cosmopolitan home to English, Welsh, Scots Irish, Swedes, Germans ect" . The reader immediatly picks up on the wide variety of Nationality's through the long list of origins,initially british based, then extending to other areas of Europe. This mix of cultures is why America can sometimes be derogativaly reffered to as the global melting pot of cultures. This eurocentric theme of settlement is challenged by the introduction of Africans, the source informs how afro-american settlement developed from them being introduced as slaves to their modern day fight for freedom.

This source is pro settlement due to the attention paid in the second paragraph to the postive aspects of settlement, the employment of words such as membership and kinship distinguish this positive view. In contrast to the attention paid towards the newcomers, there is very little next to nothing mentioned of the Native americans, just one name of a tribe and there isno mention of the Native plight here. Words which remain with America today all point towards the ideal of unification, leading to the United States Of America. That said the source is not unrealistic in the fact that it also draws attention to the struggle for colonization that ensued between the europeans, over geographical points "the germans put down roots in the center, while the scots irish struggled on the frontier". This two sided opinion makes the source a useful peice of information when analyzing the colonization of Penslyvania.

John Smith's account details the first voyage of exploration to Virginia

About the tenth of September there was about 46. of our men dead, at which time Captaine Wingefield having ordred the affaires in such sort that he was generally hated of all, in which respect with one consent he was deposed from his presidencie, and Captaine Ratcliffe according to his course was elected.
Our provision now being within twentie dayes spent, the Indians brought us great store both of Corne and bread ready made: and also there came such aboundance of Fowles into the Rivers, as greatly refreshed our weake estates, where uppon many of our weake men were presently able to goe abroad.
As yet we had no houses to cover us, our tents were rotten and our Cabbins worse than nought: our best commodities was Yron which we made into little chissels.
As at this time were most of our chiefest men either sicke or discontented, the rest being in such dispaire, as they would rather starve and rot with idleness, then be persuaded to do any thing for their owne reliefe without constraint: our victualles being now within eighteene dayes spent, and the Indians trade decreasing, I was sent to the mouth of the river to Kegquohtan an Indian Towne, to trade for Corne, and try the river for Fish, but our fishing we could not effect by reason of the stormy weather. The Indians thinking us neare famished, with carelesse kindnes, offered us little pieces of bread and small handfulls of beanes or wheat, for a hatchet or a piece of copper: In like maner I entertained their kindnes, and in like scorne offered them like commodities, but the Children, or any that shewe extraordinary kundnes, I liberally confronted with free gifte such trifles as wel contented them.

In this short entry John Smith is explaining about how the men were struggling to survive and mentions at the beginning that many have already died. They have not built houses yet and are running out of food. Smith writes about how the men would rather starve then help themselves.
I picked this entry because of the month that John Smith is writing, he says "About the tenth of September..." It is not even the Winter yet, let alone the beginning of Autumn and they are already struggling. Smith then goes on is own to trade with the Indians.
The part I find revealing is how Smith calls them Indians, he doesn't refer to them as 'savages' or 'animals'. This, I think, shows that he is on good terms with them, and can communicate with them well.
This is show towards the end of the entry, after the Indians have prepared food for him to take, Smith in return 'entertained their kindnes'.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Thanks Emily, Tom and Grace for this week's posts.

We don't have them yet from Lara or Becky, but I think perhaps that is due to illness.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I have chosen to look at what Canadians think of America, seeing as they are neighbours.

A Mexican, A Canadian, And An American are walking together down a road, when they stumble upon a lamp with a genie in it.After they rub the lamp, a Genie pops out and says"Okay, you all get 1 wish each, who's going first?"
The Mexican says"Oh, ME, ME!" "I want A 2-mile wide road across Mexico"
Genie, "Granted!" POOF!
American, "Now me! I want a 20 foot brick wall around all of the USA to keep the Canadians out"
Genie, "Granted!" POOF
Genie, "Okay Canadian, It's Your turn!"
Canadian, "Is that wall you put around the USA waterproof?"
Genie, "Yup!"
Canadian, "Fill 'er Up!"

Some Canadians hate the idea of having their country dependant on another, and wish for Canada to be more independent. It could be because they are so dependent on the United States that it angers them into dislike of the United States. They don't want to be dependent, they want there own stuff.
"I don't WANT to see America on every corner in Canada! Just because the United States basically runs everything Canadian nowadays does not mean I want it to! I want Canada to be Canadian! NOT AMERICAN!"

After reading a few forums where people have asked questions on Canada vs America I have found that views vary from coast to coast, for example people who live in Vancouver on the West coast have a very different opinion to Los Angeles then people who live in Ontario. "Seagurl" said that she 'wouldn't feel safe knowing that people carry guns.'
There is also this feeling that Canadians think Americans don't care about them until something like the Winter Olympics comes along and they're all over the news. More Canadians visit America then the other way round and it drives them nuts to think that America does not no much about Canada.
"I've grown up with you and I know you and love you USA, but you don't recognize me! You don't even know I, Canada, exists! And you don't care!" Robnator

I have also found from reading and personal experience that Canadians find it offensive if you ask them "Where about's in America are you from?" However they then find that when you tell the person you are from Canada the get treated differently (in a positive way).

A truly Canadian Apology to the USA, courtesy of Rick Mercer from This Hour Has 22 Minutes, CBC Television:
'Hello. I'm Anthony St. George on location here in Washington.
On behalf of Canadians everywhere I'd like to offer an apology to the United States of America. We haven't been getting along very well recently and for that, I am truly sorry. I'm sorry we called George Bush a moron. He is a moron, but it wasn't nice of us to point it out. If it's any consolation, the fact that he's a moron shouldn't reflect poorly on the people of America. After all, it's not like you actually elected him.

I'm sorry about our softwood lumber. Just because we have more trees than you, doesn't give us the right to sell you lumber that's cheaper and better than your own.

I'm sorry about our waffling on Iraq. I mean, when you're going up against a crazed dictator, you want to have your friends by your side. I realize it took more than two years before you guys pitched in against Hitler, but that was different. Everyone knew he had weapons.

I'm sorry we burnt down your White House during the War of 1812. I see you've rebuilt it! It's very nice.

I'm sorry for Alan Thicke, Shania Twain, Celine Dion, Loverboy, that song from Seriff that ends with a really high-pitched long note. Your beer. I know we had nothing to do with your beer, but we feel your pain.

And finally on behalf of all Canadians, I'm sorry that we're constantly apologizing for things in a passive-aggressive way which is really a thinly veiled criticism. I sincerely hope that you're not upset over this. Because we've seen what you do to countries you get upset with.

Iran's Views On America

On this link there are many Cartoons by Massoud Shojai Tabatabai. He is Irans top cartoonist and is editor-in-cheif for the Iranian monthly cartoon magazine "Kayhan". The cartoons on this website show many Iranian's views on the current war in the middle east. Many Iranian's believe in anti-Americanism, which is hostility or opposition to the people, policies or Government of the United States.

Each cartoon posted onto this website is Anti-America, and because Massoud Shojai Tabatabai is a highly successful and respected journalist, these sources can be seen as valid and reliable to a certain extent. To counteract this, because he is Iranian himself, he may have a biased view on the matter.

Iran has had anti-Americanism views for a long time. From the Tehran Crisis in 1979 (52 US citezens held captive for 444 days for the Iranian Revolution), Iran percieved the United States as "inept, pagan military giant that could not even rescue its own hostages because God was on the other side".

More currently, Iranian's view America's interception into the Middle East, causing a war, as meddling. The Iranian Government sent Hussan Taheri Khoramabadi to address tens of thousands of worshippers. In this speech he quoted "America's meddling was part of a plot to destroy Irans economy" and then goes on to expand on the quote by saying "America wants to prove to the European and our neighbours countries and the middle eastern countries that there is no stability in Iran, that theres anarchy here" and "That way others would not have relations and do buisness with Iran". The crowd replied "DEATH TO AMERICA". This shows that a majority of the Iranian public have anti-americanism views, and do not agree with the American "meddling" in Irans buisness. [1]


Walmarts In America

This is a map displaying all the Walmart superstores over the United States of America. Walmarts first store opened in 1962, but there are now 4,227 stores across the USA alone. This map, taken in 2009, shows just how have Americas commercial buisness have grown in just under 50 years. There are now over 7,000 Walmarts throughout the world. This demonstrates how much a capitalist superstore can spread its ideology across the globe. Other countries investing in Walmart shows just how much foreign countries and nations respect the capitalist view.

"Failed special forces rescue missions and allegations of covering up friendly fire deaths have dogged the US military for decades."

I have chosen this article from the the British website I think it is a good example of negative feelings towards America and the war in Iraq. The article is about friendly fire cover ups that the USA have done in order to take blame away from themselves from their own wrong doings and mistakes. This is a classic example of America's attempts to maintain a respected international image. Having taken the role of a 'world police', mild forms of media censorship regarding international conflicts has been necessary for America to uphold its reputation. When information like this is leaked it becomes easy for countries to criticise America's foreign policy, and therefore is significant as a way to understand how America is viewed.

Turkey's Anti- America views

The Author beginnings with stating that it’s hard to believe to the extent of how Anti America, the Turkish public really are. He also goes on the say how the variety of their hatred differs from Religious believes to secular leftists is “a reality that has to be reckoned with.”

There are Three ‘critical factors’ in which these ideas are shown. One being In the 70’s after Turkey invaded Cyprus to prevent the slaughter of the island’s Turks based on its agreement to keep the Status quo which was disrupted by the Greek coup, imposed was America arms embargo which lasted two years. Another is the apparent U.S ‘unshaken’ support of Israel against the Palestine’s plight and misery.

The author continues saying that as a result, everything America does in the region and every demand on Turkey is met with great resistance both official and public.
This source was written on 14th February, 2010. Therefore is it to extend reliable being that it is quite updated and resent. In the context of the author, and him being a professor of political sociology at a Turkish University gives the impression that he knows what he’s talking about

Saturday, October 9, 2010

European stereotypes

The map I chose to analyse is a map of Europe as seen by the British, stereotpyically Britain has always been skeptical of the European union. The map reinforces this view as many of the words have negative connotations, such as 'Evil Federated Empire of Europe', 'Not of significance' and 'What an odd country!'. Futhermore three elements combine to reinforce Britain's euroskepticism; the fact that it's an island nation, the legacy of it's oversee's empire and it's holdout against a continent dominated by the Nazis. Therefore for some Britains Europe is not seen as a collection of states but as an 'Evil Federated Empire of Europe' showing a very negative view of Europe.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

This is a map of teams you will find in Major League Baseball.
I have chosen this map because I think it shows the obsession America has with the sport and how it refers to the 'countries' of baseball.
American would usually support the local team, unless you had moved from one place to another, however the map shows that the teams don't work by states more areas and there could be two teams in one state e.g the Yankees and the Red Sox.
The map shows that baseball will and has always been the typical American sport. In the US, the words ‘ballgame’ and ‘ballpark’ automatically refer to baseball, not to any other sport. The game has a mainly eastern following and it wasn't until 1961 when the first West Coast team was created the LA Angels.

Map of America

This is an interesting map of Southen L.A and their gang territories. It is divided into 2 groups. Red- Blood + Blue - Crip. Its fairly obvious how Crip has the mojority of space, they are known as the biggest and most violent street gangs in America. They have an estimated amount of members between 30,000 to 35,000. The map has the feel of that to an American election night, each being either Republican or democratic. The most observant part of the map is the fact that the 'Blood' Gang have attached themsleves at different places as if to try and intimiate the crip into moving out. It is also important to note the fact, what does the white blanks mean? Are representing regular citizens of America? if so its almost unbelievable to see how little they have and the fact that they are trapped inbetween too bitter battles most likely all throught their daily lives, living here.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Maps of churches in America

This is a map of America that highlights the different religions being practiced there. As you can see from the map the states next to each other such as Oklahoma, Mississippi, Tennessee and Georgia are heavily populated with Baptists.Where the majority of the rest of the map is hugely covered by the Catholic religion. I find this map interesting as it shows us just how dominated America still is by religion but also at how diverse they all are. It is a good reflection of freedom of speech allowed in America whereas in other parts of the word people die and are killed for what they believe in and here the map shows that one country is full with different religions.The first amendment allows them to freely exercise their religion. Many religions have flourished in the united states of America making it the most religiously diverse country in the world.

The website I chose to discuss is one about the war in Iraq, this website critcises the way the former US president George Bush handled the Iraq war. According to this article within hours of the September 11th attacks Bush was blaming Osama bin Laden for these attacks and therefore declaring a war on terrosim. According to the article the propanda campaign was so successful that by 2003 70% of americans believed Saddam Hussein was behind the attacks when apparently there was no real evidence linking him to the crimes. This article directly attacks how America and the former president George Bush dealt with the September 11th attacks and critices the American government as a whole. Clearly this article is biased towards Iraq, as throughout the article their is no positive mention made of America either as a whole, or it's government. Therefore we cannot trust the article completely and it would be naeive to do so. The reason why I chose this article is because, even though the article isn't completely trustworthy it is interesting to view the war in Iraq not from a UK or US perspective.

negative website about America

For negative websites about America i chose a site about it's environmental issues. The reason for this is because America are one of the countries who say they want to improve the environment and also help other countries in learning how to do that. like America are the teachers and everyone else needs to watch them. I chose the site which you can click on yourself which says the U.S manmade environmental disasters. It shows how they have destroyed certain areas of wildlife areas and have made it impossible for anything to live there. It portrays the U.S as careless and selfish as it shows how they dump waste and as the image i have chose shows how bad it has got in certain areas.
I have also chose another site which shows America's carelessness when it comes to the environment this site talks about the farmers and how they use the wrong stuff such as pesticides instead of more eco-freindly materials. However the U.S continue to blame other countries for there own mistakes and refuse to take any blame. Also George Bush has been accused of covering up a major environmental issue in october 2000 300 million of gallons of mercury and arsenic laced coal flooded land which destroyed land and ruined property this spill killed everything in the ohio river. which is all explained in the link i have provided.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Positive Portrayal Of America

Captain America is a Marvel superhero. Superheroes have commonly represented immortality and come across as "Saviour" figures.
To me, Captain America is a very positive portrayal of America. Due The fact that Americans themselves created this superhero this tells me that there is a certain way they want to be viewed by the rest of the world.
Here the image of a superhero conveys the themes of strength and protection, these ideas are intergral to the way Americans wish to define their nation, as the protector of the modern world. Although this can be seen as a egotistcal view, I personally think that America is a country that uses its powers to protect its citzens and the less fortunate. The theme of protection is epitomised in the symbolic shield captian America wields.In this picture The body language of Captain America displays the strength that is within a nation due to its unification of all people. Hence the United states.

Negative image of America

This Image represents the Negative side of America, in the sense that as an American, you are initiated to free speech which as shown can lead to serious promblems.

The Children in the picture are members, along with their family of a hate group named Westboro Baptist Church made up nearly of one family, who picket funerals of Milltrary U.S soldier and descrimate the American flag. They are known for its anti-homosexuality. They also believe that God hates America and that every American is sinful.

Its negative because even thought America is a free country where everyone is initiated to their own opinion. It is exactly that, that course conflict. The fact that this church takes it further by saying: "Thank God for 9/11" is an abomination.

A negative image of America is the populations obesity levels.
America is one of the richest countries in the world, in-spite of this Americans are some of the unhealthiest people in the world. Even though America has great economic power and technological advancement, the country also has the smallest fund of practical nutritional knowledge.
America is known as the most obese nation in the world. American’s are perceived as leading unhealthy life styles, using their cars to go everyone rather than walking short distances to shops. Food outlets are mainly fast food chains serving up large portions of junk food such as burgers and hot dogs.
When visiting many places of entertainment in America, from theme parks to baseball games, the main choice of food and beverages are high in calories. Children are growing up believing chicken nuggets, hot dogs or burgers washed down with fizzy drinks are the main staple of food when eating out. An evening at the pictures is not complete without a large box of popcorn and a large fizzy drink. Americans demand value for money, and so portions are not small. An average portion served in America would be considered as large in most other countries.
This has led to a negative image of America as a country which allows it’s citizen’s to lead an unhealthy and lazy lifestyle and perceived as doing little to reverse the trend.
The world looks on worriedly, as they know that America influences other countries and that ‘what happens in America today, happens in other countries over the next 5-10 years’

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Remembering 9/11 victims

In contrast to my previous image I believe this one to be about hope and dignity, remembering those who tragically lost their lives during the destruction in 9/11. Futhermore the fact that all the men are looking at the american flag shows the pride they have in their country, also the way in which they are working as a team to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 bombings shows a strength that is very positive and when you see this picture if you were american i'm sure you would be very proud of the men. Futhermore this image is positive as the men are everyday workers which evokes even more pride as an average american would see this picture and feel they could relate with the men, as they are working for their country. Unlike my previous image the main focus of this is about other people, remembering the victims and not about the actual men pictured which is very positive whereas the previous picture was about make-up , hair ect. Therefore this is why I have chosen this picture to be a positive aspect of America as it shows in times of trouble americans come together and rememeber what truely matters.

Disney world is a positive image of America because it shows family values and is known all over the world. It creates the idea of America about the importance of family. It is also a great tourist attraction which lets people learn more about America. In disney there is a president history show which is shown to the guests who visit. Disney is pro-America and tells people how good there country is. American values are seen throughout the park including the food with burgers and chips and hotdogs. Disney is also seen as a sign of equality and acceptence to anyone who visits and does not descriminate against any religion,race or colour. It is also a sign of the American dream with a show about Walt the creator of the park which was first open in october 1971. In the park it shows Walt's troubles he had before the park became a success and shows with work anyone can achieve the impossible which is a great belief within America. The park's motto "where dreams come true" is a sign of the american dream.

The Disney theme parks have become a part of American culture, and have displayed to the rest of the world how people should be entertained. America is a proud and patriotic nation, and Disney displays this patriotism is its theme parks. The Presidents Hall in the Magic kingdom is a 20 minute show which uses animatronics to bring every president America has had to life. The show gives such a positive and patriotic display of America’s presidents that I have seen the American people stand and applaud emotionally at the end of the shows. The USA Pavilion in Epcot exhibits America at its best, and showcases American history in The Great American Adventure show, which displays how ‘through grit, strength and bravery’ America has become the country it is today.

American Baby Beauty Pageants

The image I have chosen which I percieve to be a negative image of America is a controversial one, firstly I have chosen it for the sole reason that this girl can only be about 5 years old but has already been directly affected by having the want to improve on her looks. One of the main reasons I see this as being negative is the fact that at her young age looks, clothes, body image in general should not be something she is thinking about. Whereas playing with her toys, running around playing games is. Clearly we have to take into account the fact that her parents are obviously implementing these changes in her, but we have to ask ourselves that if she is already thinking about her body image and how she looks at such a young age what is she going to be like by the time she is in her teens? The american culture of plastic surgery is such a phenonoma that this girl is likely to follow the many women who have chosen to have plastic surgery, though the main difference between those women who choose that and this little girl is just that - choice. This little girl has been forced into thinking about her body image from such a young age and so that is all she is going to remember looking like, thus following the many american women who constantly are looking to improve their body image so we have to ourselves what she is going to look like in 20 years time?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Negative America

This picture shows a young woman who feels the need to change her whole body when in reality there is nothing medically wrong with her.
I have chosen this as a negative picture because so many people nowadays think they have to change the way they look to conform to today's societies. For example young girls see the need to change their natural assets to attract a partner or become popular.
Plastic surgery ruins the progression of age. People have started to think that as soon as they see a wrinkle they need to get Botox. These people may then start to look in the mirror and see the flaws and then feel the need to change more.
Americans spend more than $13 billion a year on cosmetic surgery when this money could be spent on charities not just over the world but in their own country.

Negative Symbol of America

As a negative image of America i have chosen the confederate battle flag, it is a prime example of how stereotype has shaped how America is viewed in the modern world. When we think about the southern confederate states of America we automatically think 'redneck'. This stereotype has branded many people who raise the confederate flag as racists, when in actual fact the flag does not represent this at all.
The flag has been adopted by racist movements like the ku klux klan in recent years, and as a result, lingering tensions of racial conflict in the past have been automatically associated with this symbol.
the flag traditionally represented the south's resistence to northern political dominance but became racially charged during the civil rights movement in the 1950's and 1960's, when fighting against desegregation became the focal point of that movement - something which had characterised a lot of confederate states.
With some analysis, it could be said that the confederate flag has become a symbol of America's racist history, while the northern states have come to signify liberty and equality.

Postive symbol of America

This is an image of the liberty bell which resides in the city of Philadelphia. Inscribed onto the bell is


A replica bell was made from melted down cannons from the American civil war and the American revolutionary war, the cannons were taken from each army of the wars. The replica weighed 13,000 pounds, every 1000 pound signifies one original state of America. The replica bell was used in festive holidays as a symbol of modern America.

Positive image of America

This image of The Falling Man was taken by Richard Drew of a man falling from the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 9:41:15 a.m during the devastating events of the September 11th attacks in New York.

Even though this image can be seen as negative as its essentially an image of the man's last moments before his death and it's connection with America's most devastating terroist attack to date, its can also be interpreted as a positive image. This picture is striking as the man is compeletly peaceful. The esquire states that in the picture,

"Although he has not chosen his fate, he appears to have, in his last instants of life, embraced it. If he were not falling, he might very well be flying."

I personaly believe this image protrays to not only Americans but to the rest of the world, what it is to be an American. His body represents what America is: Freedom.

Positive America

I have chosen a picture of the Statue of Liberty as my positive picture of America. This is because I think Liberty is the most recognised landmark of the USA.
The book she holds has July IV inscribed on it which is the date of the American Declaration of Indpendence. The crown on her head has 7 points and these represent the seven seas and continents of the world.
She welcomes 12 million visitors each year and has become a sign of freedom and hope for not only America but for other countries all over the world.
Given to America by France after the American Revolution she was placed in New York Harbour to giving ships their first view of the new world.