American Culture, Global Poor Taste
I’ve always heard that people all over the world love our culture, and hate us for our foreign policy; the implication when people say this is usually something like ‘the rest of the world is right; our foreign policy is terrible and our culture is great’.
I’ve always thought that American foreign policy, in spite of its very numerous shortcomings, rarely deserves the sort of rich, deep hate people manage so often to conjure up about it.
But I had also believed that American culture was as great as the rest of the world is supposed to think it is.
In a way this is true; there are many wonderful facets of our culture, truly great music and literature and film.
Unfortunately, these aren’t the things that other people love about our culture. They like films that speak the universal languages of sex and big explosions. They love celebrities.
Most of all, they like club music.
I’ve heard more American hip-hop and rap in a month and a half around French teenagers than I did in two years in college in the US.
It’s as if the rest of the world can only reach the golden streets of American culture by crawling though or gutters.