US Culture

What Americans generally believe

That all people are equal and deserve an equal opportunity in life. They should all be treated fairly and with the same level of respect. This is one of the most basic principles of American philosophy.

That everyone is free to be an individual. Americans do not believe in conforming to a general ideology or behavior. Individuality and self-expression are encouraged.

That competition brings out the best in people and in businesses. Competition is another of the basic principles of American philosophy.

That you are responsible for taking control of your own life and determining your own future. Americans do not believe in luck or fate. They are very proud of their individual achievements.

That change is good and necessary. It brings about progress and improvement. Tradition is not as valued in America as it is in other cultures.

That it is best to be honest and direct. In many cultures, it is considered impolite to speak too frankly or directly about a subject. Americans prefer to speak openly, even when giving a negative opinion or delivering bad news.

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That rationality is more important than emotion when making a decision. Americans are often most interested in "the bottom line." In other words, the best decision is the one that has the most productive outcome, usually measured in dollars and cents.

What Americans love

Their country. Americans are very patriotic. They are very proud of their country and their way of life. They also have great respect for those who serve or have served in the armed forces.

Their free time. Americans may not have much free time compared to people in some countries, but they value what they have. They will spend that time doing something for themselves, their family, or their community. Weekends and vacations are always full of activities.

The outdoors. The United States government protects large sections of land from development and preserves them for the enjoyment of all. Americans enjoy outdoor activities all year round. Depending on the region, popular activities include sailing, hiking, mountain climbing, camping, and skiing.

Sports. The United States probably has more professional athletes participating in a greater number of professional sports than any other country. Americans love to watch sports, either live or on television. They also love to participate in sports, and there are countless leagues for players of all ages and skill levels.