What and why is Americanism a concept that is specific to the United States?

Among its key concepts are freedom, equality, individualism, and democracy. America is the country full of choices and opportunities. It is believed that the United States is an exceptional nation because of these values. Yet, the most significant distinctive feature of the USA is the wide diversity of ethnicities and ideologies presented among the country’s citizens and residents. Even though people’s beliefs differ to some extent, each member of the American community has a right to speak up their mind and state their point of view. This is what makes the country strong and unique; with its astonishing landscapes, tasty cuisine, fascinating traditions, and rich cultural heritage.  In short, you can say that Americanism is what makes people in the US American.

"This is not a mere idealistic fancy. It is the natural position of this great republic among the nations of the earth. It is its noblest vocation, and it will be a glorious day for the United States when the good sense and the self-respect of the American people see in this their "manifest destiny.”  [Carl Schurz, True Americanism – April 18, 1859, Massachusetts, Annals of American}

What else makes Americanism unique?  It’s not at any time dependent on a person’s place of birth, but the U.S. values they have accepted.  These values include control of one’s fate, belief in equal opportunities and not afraid of change.  Americanism emphasizes the love for one’s country; to include its symbols, such as the flag and Declaration of Independence.  These are the accepted U.S. Valves; as you can see, Americanism has a lot in common with nationalism and patriotism.  +But, unlike nationalism, Americanism doesn’t regard ethnicity as vital.


There are also some other terms associated with Americanism.   Did you know that Americanism has a long and exciting history? Well, you’ll see it in this section:


  • Americanism has its roots in the 17th century Protestantism. Back then, people proclaimed the US the "chosen country.” It meant that America, with its morals and democratic principles, should be an example to others.
  • Later the colonists won the Revolutionary war. People saw it as proof of the country’s special status. They believed that new land offers unlimited opportunities. You only had to work hard.
  • Soon the idea of Manifest Destiny was born. The US was supposed to spread its values throughout the continent. When the era of globalization came, Americanism became even more widespread.
  • After World War I, veterans started an organization called the American Legion. They wanted to promote patriotism, democracy, and freedom. Besides, they came up with the concept of "100 percent Americanism”. By it, they meant the complete adherence to the US values. The organization still exists today and holds annual Americanism essay contests.
  • Theodore Roosevelt is associated with the popularization of Americanism. He encouraged immigrants to come to the US and adopt the American way of living. People from all over the world moved to the United States in search of a better life.
  • The idea that all men are created equal is written in the Declaration of Independence. While this statement is many centuries old, it still inspires millions of Americans.