American Food


Published on

Published in: Education, Health & Medicine
1 Comment
No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

American Food

  1. 1. As American as Apple Pie: Food Culture and Cultural Values in the USA Natalia Alhazov, PhD December 10, 2009
  2. 2. <ul><li>What is American Food? </li></ul><ul><li>What are American Cultural Values? </li></ul>
  3. 3. American Food <ul><li>. </li></ul>
  4. 4. American Food ?
  5. 5. 10 Foods America Gave to the World Avocado, chili pepper, chocolate, corn, papaya peanuts , pineapple s , potatoes, tomatoes, vanilla
  6. 6. &quot;We have the best raw materials in the world, both quantitatively and qualitatively, but most of them are ruined in the process of preparing them for the table.&quot; - H.L. Mencken <ul><li>“ Americans can eat garbage, provided you sprinkle it liberally with ketchup, mustard, chili sauce, Tabasco sauce, cayenne pepper, or any other condiment which destroys the original flavor of the dish.&quot; - Henry Miller </li></ul>
  7. 7. Food Timeline <ul><li>Native American – naturalness & simplicity </li></ul><ul><li>European colonization - reproduction and transplantation </li></ul><ul><li>Immigration influx – ethnic multitude </li></ul><ul><li>Regional variation – climate dependence and diversity </li></ul><ul><li>Fast life – fast food </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>American Food Culture: Fast Food or… </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  9. 9. AMERICAN VALUES (after Robert Kohls) <ul><li>Control Over Environment </li></ul><ul><li>Change Seen as Natural </li></ul><ul><li>Time and Its Control </li></ul><ul><li>Equality </li></ul><ul><li>Individualism and Privacy </li></ul><ul><li>Self-Help </li></ul><ul><li>Competition </li></ul><ul><li>Future Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>Action/Work Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>InFormality </li></ul><ul><li>Directness and Openness </li></ul><ul><li>Practicality and Efficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Materialism </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><ul><li>PERSONAL CONTROL OVER THE ENVIRONMENT </li></ul></ul>Most Americans do not believe in the power of “Fate”, and to be called fatalistic is almost an insult since fatalism is viewed as being backward, primitive and naive. Most people in the U.S. consider it normal that Man should control nature rather than the other way around. Take initiative and bring about improvements to better yourself and your society!
  11. 11. 2.CHANGE SEEN AS NATURAL <ul><li>Americans see “change” as a positive condition. It is strongly linked to development, progress and growth. On the contrary, stability, continuity, tradition, and a rich heritage are not valued in America as highly as in Europe. </li></ul>
  12. 12. 3.TIME AND ITS CONTROL <ul><li>“ Time is money”. For an average American time is of utmost importance. Schedules should be planned and then followed in the smallest detail. To a non-American, Americans seem to be more concerned with getting things accomplished on time , than they are with developing deep personal relationships. </li></ul>
  13. 13. 4.EQUALITY <ul><li>Equality is, for Americans, one of their most cherished values. They believe that all people have an equal opportunity to succeed in life. This is not yet a reality in America, but most Americans agree that equality is an important civic and social goal. </li></ul><ul><li>This value leads to many Americans having an aversion to treating people of high position in a differential manner. Conversely, they often treat lower class - social and economic - people with importance. </li></ul>
  14. 14. 5. INDIVIDUALISM AND PRIVACY <ul><li>“ Individualism” probably has evolved into the most exaggerated form in the United States. Americans think they are more individualistic in their thoughts and actions than the people of any other country. They resist being considered as representatives of a homogeneous group, whatever that group. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Privacy”, assumed to be closely related to Individualism, is very precious to Americans, and is seen as a very positive condition. Every American, so as not to go mad, needs at least half an hour a day to himself! </li></ul>
  15. 15. 6.SELF-HELP <ul><li>In the United States, a person can take credit only for what he or she has accomplished by himself or herself. Having been born into a rich family would be considered “an accident of birth”. Americans pride themselves in having climbed the difficult ladder of success to whatever level they have achieved - all by themselves. </li></ul>
  16. 16. 7.COMPETITION <ul><li>Americans believe that “competition” brings out the best in any individual. They assert that it challenges or forces each person to produce the maximum humanly possible. Valuing competition, Americans have devised an economic system to go with it - free enterprise. </li></ul>
  17. 17. 8.FUTURE ORIENTATION <ul><li>Valuing the future and improvement, Americans are sure the future has something in store, and they tend to devalue the past. They may be happy with the present, but they have traditionally been hopeful that the future will bring even greater happiness. As a result, many have become good at planning, setting goals, and executing projects. </li></ul>
  18. 18. 9.ACTION AND WORK ORIENTATION <ul><li>“ Don’t just stand there”, goes a typical bit of American advice,” do something!” This expression is normally used in a crisis situation, yet, in a sense, it describes most Americans’ entire waking life, where action - any action - is seen to be superior to inaction. People gain rather than lose respect from others for such behavior. </li></ul>
  19. 19. 10.INFORMALITY <ul><li>Americans tend to be extremely informal, and somewhat disrespectful of authority. Bosses often urge their employees to call them by their first names. Dress is another area where American informality will be the most noticeable, sometimes even shocking. </li></ul>
  20. 20. 11.DIRECTNESS and OPENNESS <ul><li>Americans have always preferred the direct approach for informing people of unpleasant information. They are likely to be completely honest in delivering their negative evaluations. A large number of “assertiveness” training courses appear in the U.S. </li></ul>
  21. 21. 12.PRACTICALITY AND EFFICIENCY <ul><li>Americans have a reputation for being an extremely realistic, practical and efficient people. They pride themselves in not being very philosophically or theoretically oriented. If Americans would admit to having a philosophy, it would probably be that of pragmatism. </li></ul>
  22. 22. 13.MATERIALISM <ul><li>Americans are materialistic. It means that they value and collect more material objects than most people would ever dream of owning. It also means they give higher priority to obtaining, maintaining and protecting their material objects than they do to developing and enjoying interpersonal relationships. </li></ul>
  23. 23. American vs. European Values <ul><li>1. Control Over Environment Fatalism </li></ul><ul><li>2. Change Seen as Natural Stability and Tradition </li></ul><ul><li>3. Time and Its Control Human Interaction </li></ul><ul><li>4. Equality Hierarchy </li></ul><ul><li>5. Individualism and Privacy Collectivism </li></ul><ul><li>6. Self-Help Birthright Inheritance </li></ul><ul><li>7. Competition Cooperation </li></ul><ul><li>8. Future Orientation Past Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>9. Action/Work Orientation “ Being ” Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>10.Informality F ormality </li></ul><ul><li>11. Directness and Openness Indirectness & Ritual </li></ul><ul><li>12.Practicality and Efficiency Idealism </li></ul><ul><li>13.Materialism Spiritualism </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>Fast Food and the American Diet </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  25. 25. Tell me what you eat and I’ll tell you who you are. <ul><li>Does American food reflect American character? </li></ul><ul><li>“ Yes” </li></ul><ul><li>“ No” </li></ul><ul><li>More “Yes” than “No” </li></ul><ul><li>More “No” than “Yes” </li></ul><ul><li>2. How does it? </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><li>Thank you for attention! </li></ul>