Americans’ (Politicized) Ideas of Europe

Americans hold many preconceived notions about Europe and Europeans, often based on movies and tourism. During U.S. election cycles, American politicians frequently play on American stereotypes about Europe to score points against their rivals.

Martin Klingst, a German journalist based in the United States, comments on politicians’ portrayals of Europe in the Republican primaries.

The op-ed is published online by the Washington Post.

For deeper probing of American attitudes toward Europe and the history of American-European relations, see:

William L. Chew and Dominique Laurent, eds., National Stereotypes in Perspective: Americans in France, Frenchmen in America (Rodopi, 2001).

Daniel Sheldon Hamilton, Conflict and Cooperation in Transatlantic Relations (Washington, DC: Center for Transatlantic Relations, 2004).

Richard F. Kuisel, The French Way: How France Embraced and Rejected American Values and Power (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2011).

Richard F. Kuisel, Seducing the French: The Dilemma of Americanization (Berkeley and Los Angeles, CA: University of California Press, 1993).

Richard H. Pells, Not Like Us: How Europeans Have Loved, Hated, and Transformed American Culture Since World War II (New York: Basic Books/HarperCollins, 1997) [Paperback edition, Basic Books, 1998].

Frank Trommler and Elliott Shore, eds., The German-American Encounter: Conflict and Cooperation between Two Cultures, 1800-2000 (New York: Berghahn Books, 2001).

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