Political Meaning in "American"

Luis Medina (fmedina@PEAK.ORG)
Sun, 19 Feb 1995 14:20:57 -0800

> .......
> Thus, I've thought about this for a long time, and I think there are other
> questions to ask. Why does the name of this country so disturb folks in other
> countries on this continent? Is it about name, or is it about something else
> that name represents? And is this discussion so firmly embedded in the
> post-colonial era that we could not have had it before the 1960's? Is this a
> form of "name guilt" through which we atone for our imperialism?
> Candice Bradley

geographic names and maps have or represent political views of the one(S)
that makes or names those places. examples:
1) Faulklands or Malvinas
2) A Russinan map has a polar view where Russia seems surrounded by enemies.
3) In a World map made in USA, Russia seems to be bigger than it really is.
both maps benefit those in pro of militaristic policies.
4) World maps made in US maps have a projection that makes it look bigger
than it really is. Same for European Countries and their maps.
5) I have seen caribean islands In possession of my country since 1600
appear in (somewhat old) USA maps as possessions in dispute with the US.
6) I have no problem saying that I am an American if they ask me. another
thing is US citizenship. Just remember Fidel Castro and Augusto Pinochet
are Americans.
7) there would probably not have been a Spanish American war if the maps
of the two countries were in agreement. Same for recent Ecuador and Peru
little war.
8) Russians probably did not mind seeing pre199? maps where all USSR where
called Russia. Georgians and Latvians didn't like it at all.

An interview at a local high school would probably indicate that most kids
do not know the continental boundaries of the USA. All of them probably do
not have any idea of all the extra territorial possessions (other than hawaii)
However most of them would probably go to war to defend the integrity of
their country... or whatever the state dept told them it was their country.