Both individualism and collectivism exist in America. During times of American pride there is the thought of the American dream, which happens to be a large export for the U.S., “American Dream” are two words that have been able to pull the American people together (Hauhart 2015). There is an individualism in the American Dream as well, because for many people this dream is not attainable no matter how much hard work is done, there has been a gap found in these words, between the promise and achieving the dream (Hauhart 2015). People that come from the poorer parts of the America, where the employment rates and crime are high (Hauhart 2015). It has also been found that when America is going through prosperous times and the economy is great, there is a larger need to be separate from the group (Bianchi 2016). This shows in the music that is popular, the different baby names that are chosen for babies, and the need to look different, during these times (Bianchi 2016). But during hard times, whether it be the economy being down or national and/or weather disasters, there is a need to be together to get through the hard times, a need to take care of and be there for each other (Bianchi 2016).
In an article called “Planes Don’t Fly North”, American football is a part of the collectivism sphere, especially in the southern part of the U.S.. College football brings everyone together and there is a thought throughout the land that the Southeastern Conference plays (SEC) the better football than any other part of the country (May 2012). The NFL does majority of their recruiting from the SEC, so this is one of the reasons that college football coaches believe that southern football is the best (May 2012).
When I think of the different characteristics that both individualistic and collectivistic cultures contain, the U.S.A. culture falls on both sides of the spectrum. Individualistic culture characteristics are based around individuals relying on their abilities for survival and success (Mikucka 2014). Collectivistic culture characteristics are based around individuals seeking social approval constantly and consistently wanting to maintain their face consciousness and stray away from expressing their internal self (Fang, Wen, and Prybutok 2014). Due to these characteristics in both cultures, seeking self-success and needing constant social approval, and working as a unit, U.S.A. culture falls perfectly in-between. Culture in America revolves around individuals working on their success yet needing approval simultaneously and avoiding working as a unit as much as possible. Mainly, U.S.A. culture is individualistic. Everyone seeks their own success and not worry about anyone, leaving those who genuinely struggle in finances or anything in general in the dust. U.S.A. culture, at times, can come together to make sure everyone is successful, such as voting and climate change, yet in general, individualistic culture takes the cake.
Collectivistic cultures work as a unit mainly and make sure everyone is gaining the approval they seek so often. Collectivistic cultures are often more successful when working as a unit, making sure their appearance towards everyone is at the top level (Fang, Wen, and Prybutok 2014). Because of these characteristics, American football falls under the collectivistic category in terms of values. In American football, the sport is based around working as a team and making sure the team turns out successful in the end, and making sure their appearance for others, especially their fans, is top tier. American football teams consider their appearance because they are representing themselves and their team wherever they go.
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