It’s true! From the royal wedding, to the Harry Potter series, it is a definite fact that Americans love the British culture. In fact, we spent about half of a class time on it yesterday. Among the first two examples, we discussed Kate Middleton, Sherlock Holmes, The Beatles, James Bond, and Love Actually.
Dr. Leeman had us propose some possibilities as to why us Americans are so infatuated with the British. Here is what I think:
The British are exotic to us! They have pretty accents, love their tea (the very kind that we threw into the harbor, ha!) and they have given us great things like The Beatles and Harry Potter. These are some basic facts that I think most people can agree with. However, I do think it goes a bit deeper than that.
I believe that one of the main reasons we are so obsessed with British culture is because they are just different enough. Going back to the accents and customs, we can find their tradition, well, adorable. It seems quaint and old and it fascinates us. I completely agree with all of this, too.
But I think a lot of it is because it’s exotic, but not too exotic. We have the same skin color, we have similar common religions, and we speak the same language. I really, truly believe that if Harry Potter was set in Brazil, or Russia, or some other country other than Canada, it wouldn’t be received nearly as well. The names and places would be too difficult to discuss and pronounce. There is a specific level of discomfort with cultures that are so different than ours.
Therefore, with the British, we’re definitely more comfortable. Therefore, their pop culture is received easily by us.