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The American dream
Noen tanker om Norges forhold til USA.
Teenagers in Norway become more and more Americanized trough TV programs and big food chains as McDonalds who changes our eating habits and way of living, “the American way”. Then I ask myself, is this a positive or negative thing?
America is a country that we can identify our self with (Norway). Many people these days link US with something negative, world police they say ect … but who is adopting the American culture into our?
First of all teenagers, they are taking the American habits into their hearts, But who is to blame them, as there is commercial everywhere, fashion, TV-shows, MTV, the hip hop culture from New York, the aerobic culture from California and on top of that we love hamburgers, pomes fries and muffins. And let’s not forget the use of American words when the Norwegian words are not “within reach”. Can grownups imagine the “pressure” they have?
Don’t blame the teenagers, Norway similar to America is a young nation with almost no culture ( at least non we can brag about ) and National treasures. We can’t show of with great kings and great victories and conquers, with huge castles and monuments raised to honour the great leader(s).
We cant say that we where first to make pizza, pasta, sushi or other global favourites. We are a young, optimistically and naïve nation, and therefore are drawn into the American ways of living. When we look into our hearts, we have to admit that we are fascinated over this huge country that wasn’t gathered until 1898, how they are the leading country this day, economically and in almost every other way.
In the chase of identity, we do as the (urban) Americans, ”new” things as drinking café late, coffee with milk. The Norwegians have done that for ages, especially on the countryside, but the difference is that the milk in the urban days is warmed, and foamy on the top.
Have we become urban? Soon the “urban” expression is a cliché, especially in Oslo the melting pot of Norway. Oslo compared to Tokyo or New York looks like a zoological garden. But that is not the point; we have to work hard to prove that we are not farmers or hillbillies, especially when you’re from a country as Norway, where the biggest city habits 500.000 people and the second biggest have 200.000.
Competition society , Body and looks; Norway is more and more drawn into the same competition society that you can find in the USA. We are trying hard to get to the American dream in Norway. Soon we are all living in “America” or a society that is similar to the American one. A competition society is healthy for a country but in a controlled form, because at the same time the thing in the 70is we called idealism disappears. But today we are up and going, if we stand still we become farmers or “campers”. Or in the worst case scenario “loosers”, if not”freaks” or”geeks” (words often used by teenagers in Norway).
Eating disorder and body fixating addiction, and plastic surgery is another culture that has infected Norway. There is no country in the world like the usa with overweight and fat people, at the same time there is no country and culture that has the same “ideal” standard as America, with flat stomach big breasts and J.LO ass. Some people end up being on “loosing weight” (or diet) all their life, off all things you can work with, there are some people working and spending all their spear time to fight their own cellulites!
USA as a positive image
It has to be told that America has contributed positive in world scene. As the “melting pot”, without ingrown traditions. Many Americans are the pioneers in important research, science and politics. The American democracy is a excellent image for many nations with the rightful and solitary society. Many of the leading universities within science lies in USA.
A lot of the music that has dominated the world the last century has its offspring from America: jazz and blues in the 30is, Elvis in the 60this, and soul, hip-hop and rap in the 90this.
The double morale that we criticise the American society, is fully in place in Norway when we criticise the American culture. We crumble and make jokes of bad American sope operas, but we still watch them…..
Where is the world centre?
The Americans think they come from the centre of the earth; Norwegians tend to do that also. Americans have the World Series (baseball) but with only American teams in it. (No father country in their league for a while)
There are so many other things positive and negative to say about America and Norway as “its” lakai. But America compared to Norway has a much better reason to be egocentrically, so the next time you crumble and make a noise and say that all typically American is soooo lame and pathetic / think twice before you run out to grab your lunch containing a juicy burger at McDonalds.
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