Culture Shock

The following is from a post written by “Emma.” She explains that within a few years after migrating to the U.S. from Poland (over 25 years ago), she wrote a piece that described her feelings at the time. While her entire post is quite touching, for me this particular entry from her earlier piece really hit home.

The first one [stage of adjustment] was related to a tremendous culture shock – everything was so different that not being able to understand, I despised it. I hated everything: food lacking taste and full of preservatives; huge, ugly cars; commercials on TV and in magazines; being called by my first name, the striking omnipresent urge to impress everybody around with one’s possessions and status. My first impression of America was depressing: it seemed to be a country being destroyed by mighty commercialism, and deeply split along the lines of gender, race and class. A place populated by salesmen, where everybody was in the never ending process of buying or selling something with the highest profit, hardly appeared friendly or hospitable. Those temporarily not involved in the selling circuit were busy trying to get in touch with their inner victim.

I don’t think many of us can deny that her “culture shock” aptly describes the American way of life. And it’s not very flattering.

While the post is personal, she offers a bit of political insight by showing how her feelings/experiences were/are similar to “Trumpism.”

I urge you to read the entire post.

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