In Americanizing the White Man, Felix S. Cohen uses the term “Americanizing” to mean transforming immigrants from Europe into the American people. The author uses this term to raise a question about what kind of traditions and culture America heritages. For example, traditional American food and products such as corn, cigarette, and chewing tobacco, maple syrup are all heritage of Indian culture. The author points out that in Europe, the types of competitions are widespread, in which the killing of living beings prevails animals, birds, fish, and sometimes even people. According to Cohen, the American tradition of friendly team sports, the Boy Scout movement, and the “national worship of sun and air and water” is a peaceful alternative (Cohen 178). Americans borrowed these kinds and open events from the culture of traditional local people – Indians. Using numerous examples from history, the author emphasizes the uniqueness of the cultural exchange between former residents of Europe and Native Americans.
specifically for you
for only $16.05 $11/page
“Americanizing” in this context is a process of learning and spiritual development. According to Cohen, upon arriving on a new continent, the two civilizations could teach each other a lot. Due to Native American culture, the American nation has those distinctive features that shape the national structure and color. It should be noted that even though the word “Americanizing” is not widely used in the text and is used only in the first part of the work, the entire text, to one degree or another, reveals this concept using various examples. Therefore, the term is used to understand how the Americans inherited their deep, friendly, and intelligent culture. Without the lessons from the Indians, it would have been impossible to build such a civilization.
Cohen, Helix S. “Americanizing the White Man”. The American Scholar, vol. 21, no. 2, 1952, pp. 177-191