The United States is a country of extraordinary size and a very diverse ethnic composition. For this reason, the traditions and mentality of representatives of various nations intersect and intertwine here. However, a number of features of American society, however, can be distinguished.
The US is considered to have a “classless” society. The transition from one social group to another is less difficult here than in a number of other countries, everything is determined by the availability of money and human energy.
A characteristic feature of Americans is materialism and individualism, although an open demonstration of their wealth and independence is not accepted, holding back public opinion.
A feature of American residents, called “privacy”, is the inviolability of the concepts of privacy and human rights to an independent existence. The balance is expressed by the formula “do not touch me, and I will not disturb you.” This is due to the absence of queues, a calm attitude towards an unusual appearance, as well as a negative attitude towards casual interlocutors and acquaintances. Check agooddir for recent history of United States.
A powerful system of American legislation and a developed judicial infrastructure, combined with democratic rights and freedoms, largely shape the American mentality, which, however, may differ in one state or another.
The average resident of the United States is usually distinguished by cordiality and hospitality, a sincere interest in the life of foreigners, as well as tolerance. However, almost all Americans are ardent patriots, confident that their nation has collected all the best features. This is connected with great attention to their own history, traditions and family values.
According to Countryaah, the total population of the United States is just over 300 million people. Ethnically and nationally, the population is extremely diverse. Representatives of the Mongoloid, Caucasoid and Negroid races were assimilated in its composition.
The overwhelming majority of the population are white people (about 80%). African Americans in the country 12%. The rest of the country’s inhabitants are made up of people of Spanish origin, Mexicans and Puerto Ricans. The number of indigenous inhabitants of American land – the Indians – today is no more than 1.5 million people. In addition, the Chinese, Aleuts, Eskimos, Russians and many other nations live here.
English dominates in the United States and is the language of office work, brought by the first colonizers. It is owned by about 97% of the population. However, the country does not have a common official language, which is due to the diverse national composition. So, in Louisiana, French has official status, in Hawaii – Hawaiian, in New Mexico – Spanish, etc.
The second most common language in the United States is Spanish, which is associated with the inclusion of former Mexican lands in the country and the proximity of Mexico itself. So, Miami is almost entirely Hispanic. The third most common language is Chinese.
In addition to those listed, French, Thai, Vietnamese, Portuguese, Russian and other languages are often used.
A tourist should take into account that the language of Americans is often strikingly different from proper English. In addition to other pronunciations of some words, slang words, elements of slang and so on are woven into the language, which sometimes makes it difficult to understand.
The USA is a secular power with freedom of religion. Due to the already mentioned national diversity, representatives of almost all world religious denominations live here. The religion of Protestants is the most developed, they are about 52%. The second most common religion can be called Catholicism – about 24% of the inhabitants adhere to it.
In addition, Judaism, Buddhism, Islam are practiced in the country, there are Mormons and representatives of other faiths. About 4% of the population identify themselves as atheists.
American rules of conduct in society are based on the requirements of security and the system of laws of the country.
Increased attention to the problem of terrorism after the disaster of September 11 entails strict searches at airports, railway stations and other similar places. At the same time, you need to behave calmly and clearly answer questions. For the same reasons, photography is prohibited in the subway and on bridges in large cities.
Public order is observed in America very strictly. Smoking in a restaurant, pub and any unauthorized place is prohibited and faces a fine. The same applies to drinking alcoholic beverages on the street (they must be wrapped in opaque paper). Glass, plastic and paper waste is thrown into different bins.
Alcohol will not be sold to persons under the age of 21, and some drinking establishments may simply not be allowed in. Therefore, it is worth carrying your passport with you everywhere. Drunk driving is a harsh and criminal offense.
The rules of tolerance for persons of another nation are extremely important. You should never call African Americans blacks – it’s an insult. It is also better to refrain from racist jokes.
Special rules for women. In a country where feminism is prevalent, trying to let a woman through or help her get dressed can be construed as sexual harassment and result in legal action. In general, you can get to court here even for minor offenses from the point of view of a Russian tourist, such as an altercation with the police and service personnel or garbage thrown on the street.
It is worth being attentive to the names of various toponyms, which vary their sound. You also need to remember that dates in America are written according to the month-day-year system, and the time scheme is 12-hour.
It is not allowed to leave food leftovers on the table in a restaurant – everything for which money is paid will be neatly packed with you. It is also not customary to give someone a seat in transport, take off your shoes when entering the room and give gifts upon arrival.
National American holidays
4th Thursday of November – Thanksgiving Day;
December 25 – Christmas;
January 1 – New Year;
3rd Monday of January – Martin Luther King Day;
3rd Monday in February – President’s Day;
The last Monday in May is the Day of Remembrance of the Fallen;
July 4 – Independence Day;
1st Monday in September – Labor Day;
2nd Monday in October – Columbus Day;
October 31 – Halloween;
November 11 – Veterans Day.