American Culture

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(Marie T., Ilka, Marta, Sina)


Thousands of years ago the Indians went from Asia to America. After Columbus had landed in the Caribbean , many settlers came from Europe. The early settlers took the country ,they shot the buffalos and took the things which the Indians owned. The settlers even killed many Indians because they wouldn't change their religion and didn't want to give away their land. The politically correct name for the Indians today is Native Americans.


In the past there were a lot of different tribes and today we have only about 400-600 tribs left. The two most famous are the Appache and the Sioux (you don't pronounce Sioux the way it is written but you pronounce it " soo " like the sound in food ).

Here you can see a Sioux Indian

Der Sioux Indianer Amos Two Bulls.jpg


In the culture played the nature and the "Great Spirit "a big roll.The Indians had 10 bids as well as we do or example - Always stay in contact with the great spirit ( Listen to your inner voice ) - Do , what you know , that is right ( Think about what you do ). They also have Totems that are animal symbols but they also discribed as power animals. Many Tribes think that they descend from the animals and that the animal protect them. They believe that the power from the animals and the soul go from the animal into the Native American.There whole live the power animals go with the Indians.

Here you can see a Totem

Sitka Alaska Tribe Seal (2245005222)

The whole year long the ritual ghost dances belonged to the most important things. With the ghost dances they celebrated happy evens but they ask the ghost as well good hunting , health and a good harvest. The most important music instrument were the flute. they called them "Wind that brings live in the heart ". The six holes were symbols fore the heaven, earth and the four direction

Fotothek df tg 0006471 Theosophie ^ Philosophie ^ Musik ^ Musikinstrument


Jeans Trousers

Here you can see an example of a jeans


The origin of the jeans trousers are in Genua. At first the trousers name after a French town but through the american colloquil the concept "jeans" emerge. Normaly the jeans trousers passed by a blue, robust cotton. Befor the blue cotton get used, he get taked a brown sailingscarf. The jeans trousers reinforce by rivets was Jacob Davis idea. So 1872 the reinforce by rivets at first.

Cowboy Hat

Here you can see a traditional cowboy hat


At first the classic cowboy hat from USA get produced 1865. The cowboy hat get made of beavercoat but it is so expensive, that the most of cowboy hats made of rabbitcoat. A real cowboyhat cost 2000 Dollar.

Cowboy Boots

Here you see an example of traditional cowboy boots ;)

Buckie ohne Sporn.jpg

Western boots are the same as cowboy boots but cowboy boots are colloquil. The english wellington boots are the predecessor from cowboy boots. Normaly you carry they under your trousers with it get in no dust. But some people carry the boots over they trousers.

Quelle : Wikipedia

American film history

The era of silent film in 1927 was introduced with the film ,the jazz singer'.´Since then the american filmproduction moved very quickly to sound.The first synchronisation was not possible when the first sound film was made because of technical problems.Hollywood enveloped as an aspiring filmindustry and has been the target of many traveling. The classig Hollywood reached its the golden era (around1930) itwas typical that the movies had a happy ending and offered a distraction from the every day life and the 1940,the movies become more realistic again.At this Time American systemssstudioswere very Powerful and displaced Individual film makes. With the development of television the cinema had to make many renovations to contionue making 1960 the Golden era was over and Hollywood fell into a crisis, becaus the level of the movies dropped. Around 1970 the New Hollywood epoch began and movies handled the current issues like polities and society.Since then the bodget of the production increased up to this day.

American Music

by Sina

Styles of Music

The USA is the birthplace of many different styles of music, for example Jazz, Blues, Negro Spirituals, Country music, Bluegrass, Rock music, Hip-Hop and House music.
The genre “Musicals” comes from America, too.
However, an independent American classical music was developed rather late.

American Classical music

The American Classical music was for a very long time influenced by European music. It was a European composer, Antonin Dvořák from Prague, who composed the first “American” symphony “From the New World” while he lived in the USA from 1892 till 1895.
The development of an independent American music should last until the 20th century. Composers like George Gershwin, Aaron Copeland or Leonard Bernstein used Jazz elements in their music. Later on, there were modern composers like Edgar Varèse or Morton Feldman, and, maybe the most important American composer of his time, John Cage, who influenced European and Eastern music.
Some composers like Lejaren Hiller or Paul Lansky use the computer to make music. In the 1960’s Minimal Music came up; Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Terry Riley and LaMonte Young used short repeating pattern or very long held chords with only small changes to create a hypnotic kind of music.

George Gershwin

George Gershwin 1937

David Tudor and John Cage


Steve Reich and musicians playing "Six Marimbas"

Steve Reich six marimbas

Negro Spirituals

Negro Spirituals originated in the 18th century. It’s a religious style of music, which came from enslaved African people in the USA.
Usually this is an a cappella style, that is to say there’s only vocals.

Marrow Queen Easter & The Harlem Gospel Singers

Marrow Queen Esther and Harlem Gospel Singers fcm


The Blues resulted in the USA at the end of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th century. It was created by Afro-Americans.
A typical Blues band includes a guitarist, a bass player, a drummer and a vocalist. Sometimes the vocalists are replaced by another instrument (for example: violin, saxophone, trumpet…).
Some famous musicians are Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Howlin’ Wolf and B.B.King.

Robert Johnson

Robert Johnson

B.B. King



Jazz originated around the year 1900 in the USA. It was cultivated out of a mix of African and European music traditions.
Typical instruments are saxophone, clarinet, trumpet, vibraphone, piano, guitar, banjo, tuba, double bass, bass guitar, vocals and drum kit. (Of course you don’t need all of these instruments to play Jazz).
The most famous Jazz musicians are Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Charlie Parker, Dizzie Gillespie, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, John Coltrane and Keith Jarrett.

Louis Armstrong (Uncle Satchmo)

Louis Armstrong restored

Keith Jarrett

Keith Jarrett-commons

Country & Bluegrass

Country music came up at the beginning of the 20th century. This style is a mixture of traditional elements and the music of European immigrants. Country music is a big genre. The most famous sub-genre is Bluegrass, which can be seen as an acoustic version of Country music: In the most Country styles you’ll find instruments like electric guitars and basses or the pedal steel guitar. Typical Bluegrass instruments are acoustic guitar, banjo, violin, mandolin, dobro, and double bass.
Johnny Cash, Emmylou Harris and Dolly Parton are some very famous Country musicians; Bill Monroe, Doc Watson and Norman Blake represent Bluegrass.

Country Singer Johnny Cash


Bluegrass Singer & Guitarist Doc Watson

Doc Watson (Photo by Austen Millkulka)


The genre Rock music originated around the years 1950 and 1960. Typical instruments are electric guitar, bass guitar, drums, keyboards and synthesizer. The electric guitar and the bass guitar were invented in the USA, too.
Of course there are too many famous Rock musicians. Just to name a few: Bill Haley, Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Frank Zappa, Neil Young, Santana, Bruce Springsteen, Patti Smith, Linkin Park and System of a Down.

Fender Telecaster, first built 1950

Fender Telecaster American Vintage 52

Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley promoting Jailhouse Rock

Frank Zappa

Zappa 16011977 01 300

Patti Smith

Patti Smith performing at Butlins Holiday Resort Minehead, Somerset

System Of A Down


Hip Hop

Like Spirituals, Blues and big parts of the Jazz is Hip Hop part of the Afro American culture, too. Hip Hop came up in the 1970 years.
Famous musicians from this genre are The Sugarhill Gang, Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five, Kurtis Blow, Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, Snoop Dogg and 2Pac.
Hip Hop isn´t only a style of music, but contains also DJing, Breakdance and Graffiti-Writing.

Grandmaster Flash

Dj Grandmaster Flash-01-mika

Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg Hawaii

Breakdancer before typical graffiti

CCJ - Breakdance 2

All photos taken from WIKIMEDIA COMMONS