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Basstrap 06-13-2002 04:40 PM

The mosaic vs the melting pot
 
I've so often heard this expression, referring to america as the melting pot and Canada as the mosaic.

Is there any truth to this?
Explain

JessicaAnn 06-13-2002 04:50 PM

I don't know if I have ever subscribed to the idea of America being a melting pot. Yes, there are some things withinAmerican culture that have perhaps come from one culture and have become something shared by all Americans (regardless of culture).

However, I think that within America the culture of the varios ethnic groups tends to stay unique to those that are part of that ethnic group.

Hope that made sense ... It has been a long day at work and I am not thinking clearly.

daafish 06-13-2002 05:03 PM

Having lived in so many places from the east coast to the west coast that America definately has a variety of "flavors" Although, the mid-west I experienced doesn't the diversity of that coasts. California is enriched with so many different cultures that the last time I flew into Denver I was amazed to see so many white people!

Anyway, when they say melting pot, I believe relates to the fact that various cultures are assimilated into....for lack of a better word, "American culture". It seems now...for those of us in California that the mix is now a not an unusual thing.

kobayashi 06-13-2002 08:05 PM

i've often thought, as i'm apt to do, that this theory is more true in the sense of what is reflected in the national media of each nation. by media i mean not just television and radio because as you will know, basstrap, the popular media of the two nations is largely the same.

rather, i refer to festivals, parades, concert experiences and the like. something like caribana, for instance, is unrivaled in north america. in my experience canada enjoys a much more diversified array of these than our neighbours to the north.

whereas i've many friends from both american or canadian citizenry who have either adopted a north american lifestyle or successfully incorporated the heritage into thier 'new' being. such distinctions are not made along racial, ethnic or cultural lines in large part, as per my experience.

in other words the canadian pride which is derived from our 'mosaiic' is largely a falsehood in my opinion. we are more culturally diverse in our experiences, but nowhere near to the degree we like to advertise.

canadians should pride themselves on being more accepting of many rather than this mosaic design of society.

bonoman 06-13-2002 09:34 PM

Well if we all think about it as americans and canadians we are all immigrants, unless we are native. Our Parents parents are Euopeon or Asain or African. I live in Canada and as a Canadian if any American or person of another nationality asked me 'what am i' i would say Irish, both my parents are from there and i have all my family there. Canada has very loose immigration laws and lets many different cultures into our country this making our culture very difersitied.

For example where i am from we have a festival every year called heritage day. There about 90-100 different counties that particate in this. It is huge. About a million people come to it over a four day period. It has singing, dancing, food and national passtimes shown off at this event.

I dont really know how to explain it if your not Canadian but we are much more accepting of others cultures and heritage. It is something that comes natural as there are so many different immgrants around us. I think we are just more tolerable of others beliefs where as americans want everyone to be AMERICAN. Or maybe its just that Canadians dont have a lifestyle. We all have our own. This is one of the reasons i love canada so much. Everywhere you look or everyone you talk to have culture for you to be exposed to.

I also think this is why Canadians dont have such a flag waving spirt as some other nations because we are all allowed to be who we were when we first came to this country!

lady lemonade 06-13-2002 11:04 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by bonoman
I dont really know how to explain it if your not Canadian but we are much more accepting of others cultures and heritage. It is something that comes natural as there are so many different immgrants around us. I think we are just more tolerable of others beliefs where as americans want everyone to be AMERICAN. Or maybe its just that Canadians dont have a lifestyle. We all have our own. This is one of the reasons i love canada so much. Everywhere you look or everyone you talk to have culture for you to be exposed to.

I also think this is why Canadians dont have such a flag waving spirt as some other nations because we are all allowed to be who we were when we first came to this country!

I agree with what you said here. I think when people refer to America as a melting pot, it's partly due to the strong American identity. When immigrants move to the States, they become first and foremost American citizens and are taught to embrace the American ideals. Now I don't want this to sounds as if I have a stereotypical view of America, it is just that there is a stronger feeling of unity, identity, and patriotism there while allowing people to preserve their own culture.

On the other hand, the concept of Canadian identity is not as significant here in Canada. It's really hard to describe the Canadian identity. It's seems that most of the outside world has got a really stereotyped view of Canada as polite, mild-mannered caucasians who wear flannel and like to go ice-fishing. Because we don't have such a "flag waving" spirit as do Americans, many immigrants remain rooted in their culture while participating in creating a mosaic-like Canadian identity. That may be why people refer to America as a melting-pot and Canada as mosaic-like. In any case, I do think that these are only labels that do not begin to describe the complexity of the relationship between immigrants and their country of adoption...

Zooropa 06-14-2002 01:19 AM

It is becoming more and more common to refer to the United States as a "Salad Bowl" rather than a "melting Pot". Different ethnic groups often retain their culture and heritage, while at the same time embrace the American Ideal. So when looking a t a salad bowl, one can se all the different ingredients, but the sum of all the parts is called the "salad bowl".

foray 06-14-2002 01:26 AM

Face it, we are all Americans to some degree.

yarof

Lemonite 06-14-2002 06:26 AM

Ah yes.. the good ol' Why Can't everyone just speak American Standard resurfaces..

L.Unplugged

JessicaAnn 06-14-2002 08:41 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by Zooropa
It is becoming more and more common to refer to the United States as a "Salad Bowl" rather than a "melting Pot". Different ethnic groups often retain their culture and heritage, while at the same time embrace the American Ideal. So when looking a t a salad bowl, one can se all the different ingredients, but the sum of all the parts is called the "salad bowl".
That's exactly what I was trying to say ... but you said it much more eloquently. I need to learn to not post when I am so tired.

Sicy 06-14-2002 10:34 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by Lemonite
Ah yes.. the good ol' Why Can't everyone just speak American Standard resurfaces..

L.Unplugged

you forgot: "hahahaha"

sulawesigirl4 06-14-2002 10:53 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by lady lemonade
Because we don't have such a "flag waving" spirit as do Americans...
Ummm, ever travelled overseas? :D Cuz Canadian flags plastered all over ones luggage/backpack/etc. are apparently de rigeur for Canucks abroad. :p On the other hand, I have yet to see an American sporting a flag on their baggage. ;)

*teasing*

kobayashi 06-14-2002 11:09 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by sulawesigirl4


Ummm, ever travelled overseas? :D Cuz Canadian flags plastered all over ones luggage/backpack/etc. are apparently de rigeur for Canucks abroad. :p On the other hand, I have yet to see an American sporting a flag on their baggage. ;)

*teasing*

lack of american flags in travelling circles is generally attributed to a negative view of american's around the world is it not? consequently many people adopt canadian flags since we're so effin' nice.
even domestically it has become quite the thing to sport the canadian flag, but i think that has as much to do with molson canadian, hockey canada and roots as as it does with our national pride.

sulawesigirl4 06-14-2002 11:21 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by kobayashi


lack of american flags in travelling circles is generally attributed to a negative view of american's around the world is it not? consequently many people adopt canadian flags since we're so effin' nice.
even domestically it has become quite the thing to sport the canadian flag, but i think that has as much to do with molson canadian, hockey canada and roots as as it does with our national pride.

oh I dunno. I can only speak for myself. I wouldn't wear a flag American or otherwise cuz it seems kinda dorky. :silent: (not to imply anything about you flag-waving canadians or anything...) Or because I'm not really that patriotic.

I think it goes back to the old theory of the canadian inferiority complex. Gotta plaster that flag everywhere so as not to be mistaken as Americans. Canada rah rah. Didn't we discuss this a while back, kobesan? :p :D

(p.s. in case anyone mistakes this for canada bashing and desires to jump on my case, let me circumvent that and let you know that I'm actually very pro-canada, canadian-friendly, canadian-approved and a number of other nice things. ;))

kobayashi 06-14-2002 12:24 PM

sula, please stop being anti-canadian, canadian-mean and canadian-rejected among other things. get that maple leaf off your backpack as well...;)

oh the inferiority complex, we don't have to go down that road again do we?

U2Bama 06-14-2002 11:08 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by Sicy


you forgot: "hahahaha"

He also forgot to mention fecal matter.

~U2Alabama

U2002revolution! 06-22-2002 07:07 PM

wow, you mean Canada in an actual country?:p:eeklaugh:
(just kidding you lil' eskimos you!:sexywink: )

note: i'm just bitter, i could use some of your weather right about now!:scream:

kobayashi 06-22-2002 09:30 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by U2002revolution!
i'm just bitter, i could use some of your weather right about now!:scream:
are you referring to our stereotypical igloo weather or our actual weather(or at least the conditions that windsor-quebec city corridor are under right now) of temperatures between 80 and 100 F, smog warnings in toronto and affecting kingston, ottawa and montreal?

theSoulfulMofo 06-22-2002 10:24 PM

TRIVIA: The words "melting pot" came from an African American writer named Jean Toomer in the early 20th century. You may find a collection of his works in his book Cane.

mocool12 06-24-2002 03:23 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by bonoman
I dont really know how to explain it if your not Canadian but we are much more accepting of others cultures and heritage. It is something that comes natural as there are so many different immgrants around us. I think we are just more tolerable of others beliefs where as americans want everyone to be AMERICAN. Or maybe its just that Canadians dont have a lifestyle. We all have our own. This is one of the reasons i love canada so much. Everywhere you look or everyone you talk to have culture for you to be exposed to.

I also think this is why Canadians dont have such a flag waving spirt as some other nations because we are all allowed to be who we were when we first came to this country!

This reminds me of a situation I get into every so often with a friend of mine. I was born and raised in the U.S., and I also have Irish on both both sides. I'm really proud of that heritage, but my friend seems to get pissed whenever I refer to myself as 'Irish'. "You're american!" she yells. I know that, and I'm proud of it... but is it that bad to be interested in where you're family came from? She makes me feel like a fraud at times. Ok so I don't know what my point was, but yeah, it certainly seems like we're a bit more sensitive here when it comes to displaying certain backgrounds. At least in my experiences. sorry if I don't make much sense at this hour.


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