Exceptionalism is a term that could be used to define something special or of a particular character. American exceptionalism on the other hand is a term that has its origin from the American Communist Party (Seymour, 1996, p.1). It has been in use since in the 1920s when it was first used by Joseph Stalin who was a Soviet leader criticizing communist supporters. American exceptionalism was among the declarations made by the American Communist convention in proclamation of the United States economic crisis. The phrase had however been abandoned until recently during the 2008 U.S presidential campaign. This paper seeks to analyze the reality and myth of the American exceptionalism as well as discuss its impact on Cuba and Philippines.
For a long time, America has been an exceptional nation. In fact, it is thought that no other nation has been in the position of the United States of America. Americans are exceptional in terms of their religion, commercial habits, sophistication, and even their pursuit of science and technology (Seymour, 1996, p.1). It is therefore clear that American exceptionalism is not a myth but rather a real idea. The idea of American exceptionalism is attached to the manifest destiny, which was earlier on used in the promotion of most of the parts of the United States in the West. America is a nation known to accept and welcome changes unlike other nations that a resistant to change. The heresy of American exceptionalism is the willingness of America to undergo revolution in 1929. If anything, the United States academicians have described America as a nation that is the super power and leader of the world (Seymour, 1996, p.1). Nevertheless, writers and socialists have explained that American exceptionalism has also affected other nations such as British, Russia, and France just to mention a few.
Just like other nations, Cuba and Philippines were significantly affected by American exceptionalism. In one way, Cuba and the Philippines became colonies of the America. Through exceptionalism, America was able to rule several foreign nations including Cuba and Philippines. In the case of Cuba, American exceptionalism has acted as a strengthening bond to the friendship that the two nations had (Pease, 2009). For instance, Cuba adopted democracy of the American people making Cuba a democratic nation. With the adoption of democracy by Cuba, liberation is inevitable thus making Cuba a liberated nation. In addition to this, the United States of America lifted sanctions and bans on trade and travel that had been earlier placed on Cuba.
This in turn strengthened the relationship between Cuba and the United States of America. The adoption of American exceptionalism by Philippines also created a new relationship between the two nations. First, America was able to break the cultural, economic, and military differences that existed before. The Philippines was now able to freely associate with America thus benefiting in a great deal. Just recently, children in Cuba and Philippines adopted a storybook by the name Uncle Sam that has lessons on civilizations in relation to the American exceptionalism. This is a clear indication that the two nations have embraced American exceptionalism within their political, economic, and social systems.
From the discussion above, it can be deduced that American exceptionalism is not a myth but a reality. This is evidenced by the wide spread and adoption of the idea in the United States and across its borders. It can also be deduced that American exceptionalism has not only significantly affected the United States but has also had impacts on nations such as Cuba and the Philippines among others (Pease, 2009).
Pease, D. (2009). The New American Exceptionalism. Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press.
Seymour, M. (1996). American Exceptionalism: A Double Edged Sword. Web.