A central issue that we spend a lot of time talking about in sixth grade is whether or not Americanization--the adoption of American customs, traditions, music, movies and food--is a good thing or not. You see, many of the world's largest companies are American---and in an effort to make more money, they are opening stores and selling products in places ranging from China to Chile.
That means that when you travel to "foreign" countries, you're likely to see all kinds of stores, shops, foods and products that you're already familiar with! Heck, I spent an entire week in Denmark drinking Diet Cokes! Denmark has also adopted tons of other uniquely American stores and restaurants.
Don't believe me? Then check out this video:
Or take a look at who was performing in Copenhagen during the week I was there:
So my critical question is should we be concerned about Americanization? Is it a good thing that foreign countries are becoming more "American" in their musical, food and shopping tastes? Or does Americanization end up making the world a little more boring?
I asked a Danish friend that same question and she had an interesting answer. She said that she sees Americanization as a neat form of borrowing because Danish people then take American ideas and "tweak" them, making something new---and often better!
I'm not so sure, though.....I love studying new customs, cultures and traditions----and if American ideas continue to become more and more common, there will be fewer unique places in the world.
What do you think? Leave a comment to share your thinking and join us again soon on Get Lost!
Oh yeah...and remember that there are two sides to every story!
Bam Bam Bigelow
Image retrieved from http://www.interarteonline.com/Paul_Kaleja/altas/AMERICANIZATION.jpg on July 13, 2007.