Nationality Identification

Jan 8th, 2007, 12:21 PM
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Nationality Identification

Why do USA citizens dislike being identified as Americans in Europe? Or, why do they try to avoid being identified as American?
GSteed is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:26 PM
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A lot of us don't and we always benefit from the resulting warmth shown to us by "the locals."
Dukey is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:32 PM
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The attempt at masquerade is largely limited to girlie-men.
tomboy is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:38 PM
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I live in NYC and when I see a batch of American tourists cramming their way into a subway car and snapping photos of each other while shouting inane questions, it gets on my nerves. I think that all too often, people overseas are encountering THOSE tourists on a daily basis and it gives a bad impression of Americans. I try to make sure that people I meet in my travels know that I'm an American so that they don't think we're all just loud and obnoxious.
The_Babs is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:48 PM
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But babs once they learn you are from New Yawk they will think so anyway eh?
Curt is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:48 PM
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If indeed it is a serious question, I suspect that for some it is an attempt to avoid being identified with the old stereotype of the Ugly American from the 1958 novel. And I quote from the book ďA mysterious change seems to come over Americans when they go to a foreign land. They isolate themselves socially. They live pretentiously. They're loud and ostentatious. Perhaps they're frightened and defensive, or maybe they're not properly trained and make mistakes out of ignorance."
It is a stereotype and carries with it all that is wrong with stereotypes.
I think that some people are sensitive to that perception and go overboard to avoid being labeled as such. Some become overly defensive to even the question.
It is perhaps why we try to blend in, wear appropriate clothing, etc, etc.
Another reason might be a desire to disassociate oneself from particular political actions or beliefs.
robjame is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:53 PM
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Sometimes we say we're Canadians. It's because we don't want to have THE CONVERSATION. Boring, since it is so one-sided.
Dave_in_Paris is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:53 PM
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robjame, in the book, the ugly American was the good guy.
cigalechanta is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:54 PM
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>Why do USA citizens dislike being identified as Americans in Europe? <

Because all them furriners thinks we is rich and they raises the prices on us and rips us off.

ira is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:55 PM
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ummmm ".... They isolate themselves socially. They live pretentiously. They're loud and ostentatious. Perhaps they're frightened and defensive, or maybe they're not properly trained and make mistakes out of ignorance." Sounds like my neighbors.....
Curt is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 12:57 PM
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Shame on anyone who is American and says they are Canadian.
richardab is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:01 PM
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The only time I have ever read or heard about someone trying to hide that they are from the USA is here on Fodors. Seems like Fodorites are very concerned about fitting in.

SeaUrchin is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:02 PM
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Sorry Richard, but I did my service from 1965 to 1967. Enough, IMO.
Dave_in_Paris is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:03 PM
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hahahah to the Canadian pretense.

When I was in Paris once, this French guy came up to me while i was waiting for the metro and we struck up a conversation. He was very pleasant and was telling me all sorts of good places to go and see. Then he asked me "what part of England are you from?"...and I was like "uuhhh...well...I'm actually not from England, I'm from New York City." To which he gave me the dirtiest look...almost like I had tricked him...and he said "When someone tells me they are American, I say BYE BYE." and he turned and walked away. It was so insulting...but so funny.
The_Babs is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:05 PM
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Curt, i never picked up the accent even though I'm born and raised in NYC. Lucky for me...i can pretend to be Canadian OR British. haha.
The_Babs is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:08 PM
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<Why do USA citizens dislike being identified as Americans in Europe? Or, why do they try to avoid being identified as American?>

I think this is a bogus impression - based on what - i've never sought to conceal my nationality, nor to trumpet it - i do wear a peace button with an American flag motif.

I think your initial statement is a bunch of bull.
PalenqueBob is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:46 PM
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I've never met an American who pretends to be anything other than what they are. Maybe I run around with a more secure group of people than some other people do.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 01:50 PM
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And I never met an American pretending to be Canadian.
cigalechanta is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 02:00 PM
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Eh?
SeaUrchin is offline  
Jan 8th, 2007, 02:07 PM
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The fodorites who worry about fitting in must speak several languages in addition to English--fluently. Otherwise, the moment they try and say something, the gig is up.

Europeans could not care less. If they are involved in the tourist industry, they would be delighted to take your money no matter what clothes you are wearing--or what shoes you have on your feet.
FauxSteMarie is offline  

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