America and England

Clinamenic

Binary & Tweed
I still have enough humanity in me to feel bad about such snarkiness, but at the same time it is rather fun.
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
The average American has no idea there's a difference between English and British; use England and UK interchangeably.
Absolutely true. There's a pretty good joke about this in In the Loop.

But is that one even unique to Americans? I guess - and granted I don't have evidence either way - that most people outside of the UK, current/former Commonwealth countries, and possibly Western Europe have the same confusion. And tbf it's a more nuanced difference than most ignorant Americanisms. Having one word to refer to the government and citizens of a united kingdom and other words to refer to the different nationalities making up the constituent parts of that kingdom is not the most clear setup.
 

padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
The real common American mass culture misconceptions about England are probably more of Victorian/Edwardian-era stiff upper lip aristocrats a la Downton Abbey, Dickensian chimneysweeps saying "guvnor", terrible food (that one's true?), tea + crumpets, general formality, stiffness, and so on. I'd guess the general American conception of Britain is basically frozen ca. V-E Day, with exceptions for things like Beatles/Stones (and unfortunately, Oasis), Brexit, etc..
 
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padraig (u.s.)

a monkey that will go ape
it should be said that the continued existence of archaic nonsense like the House of Lords and hereditary titles is unhelpful in trying to escape that image of England as frozen in history. granted that kind of quaintness is still significantly better PR-wise than the vast and sordid doings of the Empire (unless you're a Niall Ferguson-style imperial apologist, ofc). Everyone knows Churchill and The Crown but how many people know about the Bengal Famine of 1943 that killed yunno millions of Bengalis?
 

WashYourHands

Cat Malogen
How Americans See the British (and its many subcultures) case study two

“You don’t have servants any more?”

- “Would you like ice with that sir?”


How Americans See the British (and its many subcultures) case study three

“You cheat on your taxes?”

- “Fuck aye”


How Americans See the British (and its many subcultures) case study four

”You think the royal wedding between William and Kate is illegal?”

- “You’re second-gen Irish catholic, listen to yourself”


How Brits See Americans (and their many subcultures) case study one

Race, war, Burger King, Girls, lots of spacious bits, guns, crack, yeehaw, meth, Dean Kissick, bbq, oxy, weird hats, shit food, flairs, Disney, beats, rodeos, design fail cars, something about tea, popcorn, marone, reefer madness, podcasts, more war, films with guns, Tom Cruise, Dolly Parton, Gene Hackman,Shaq, Jeffrey Dahmer, Manson family, Jordan Nikes, fentanyl, undrinkable worse than Australian alcoholic beverages, words like wow/awesome, loose as opposed to conservative apart from Qanon which was unfortunately universally seen as hilarious, isolated Bristol accents, a face carved mountain in the middle somewhere, genocide, slavery, Amish, burritos, Burroughs, baseball, face painted athletes, gridiron, bourbon, gumbo, New Yawlins, rednecks, duelling banjos, disco, jazz, tv shit, assassinations, Ghostbusters, space stuff, rich nerds, repressed gay cowboys like Gus, city tours of street addicts on YT, pools in backyards, people making trouble in your neighbourhood so you move from Philly to the west coast with a *butler

*see case study two
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
Absolutely true. There's a pretty good joke about this in In the Loop.

But is that one even unique to Americans? I guess - and granted I don't have evidence either way - that most people outside of the UK, current/former Commonwealth countries, and possibly Western Europe have the same confusion. And tbf it's a more nuanced difference than most ignorant Americanisms. Having one word to refer to the government and citizens of a united kingdom and other words to refer to the different nationalities making up the constituent parts of that kingdom is not the most clear setup.

One thing I noticed when you're selecting a language is it's often described as UK or British, or represented with a union flag. So yeah in short.

But it's quite confusing, I bet a lot of Brits don't know the difference between the UK and Great Britain and the British Isles.... in fact I have to think.

UK stands for The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland so presumably, strictly speaking, Northern Ireland is not part of Great Britain. And I guess if you said The British Isles - which is maybe a less technical term - then it means the island with England, Scotland and Wales and the other island with both Irelands on it... so seems to imply that Eire is part of the British Isles which seems kinda controversial.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
The real common American mass culture misconceptions about England are probably more of Victorian/Edwardian-era stiff upper lip aristocrats a la Downton Abbey,

I may have said this before, but I think it's funny enough to repeat, even though it's not about the US/UK connect, but rather the Russia/UK one and it's relevant to the above, in that I think that's exactly what Liza thought of the UK. When she was living in Germany before she moved to Yorkshire she watched that film called Little Voice which has Jane Horrocks doing impressions of loads of singers and it's set.... I can't remember where, maybe Liverpool. Anyway the point is that Liza saw this depiction of northern working class England and she couldn't believe it. She said to the English family who showed it to her that surely it couldn't be possible that there would be English women that had tattoos and spoke with such a rough accent and vulgar language. Though obviously she soon revised that opinion on moving to northern England.... totally and utterly revised it. One hundred and eighty degrees,
 

Mr. Tea

Let's Talk About Ceps
One thing I noticed when you're selecting a language is it's often described as UK or British, or represented with a union flag. So yeah in short.

But it's quite confusing, I bet a lot of Brits don't know the difference between the UK and Great Britain and the British Isles.... in fact I have to think.

UK stands for The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland so presumably, strictly speaking, Northern Ireland is not part of Great Britain. And I guess if you said The British Isles - which is maybe a less technical term - then it means the island with England, Scotland and Wales and the other island with both Irelands on it... so seems to imply that Eire is part of the British Isles which seems kinda controversial.
None of the Irish people I've ever met have been the sort to get annoyed about Ireland (the island) being considered part of the British Isles, because it's a geographic term, not a political one. I've seen the kind of Americans who like getting offended on other people's behalf call it "the North Atlantic Archipelago", which apart from being extremely unwieldy, is also very imprecise, and could be applied to any island group from the Faroes to the Azores.

The funniest variation on this theme of nationalism through nomenclature is hardline ScotsNats on Twitter etc. claiming that "Britain", far from meaning the island that includes the mainland parts of England, Wales and Scotland, is actually a political term for England and Wales only, and doesn't include Scotland at all.
 

version

Well-known member

The British Aren’t Coming. They’re Here.​

As a historic presidential election looms, several of America’s largest and most powerful newsrooms are now being led by English journalists. Why?

 

IdleRich

IdleRich
Absolutely true. There's a pretty good joke about this in In the Loop.

But is that one even unique to Americans? I guess - and granted I don't have evidence either way - that most people outside of the UK, current/former Commonwealth countries, and possibly Western Europe have the same confusion. And tbf it's a more nuanced difference than most ignorant Americanisms. Having one word to refer to the government and citizens of a united kingdom and other words to refer to the different nationalities making up the constituent parts of that kingdom is not the most clear setup.

Nah not at all unique to US, every time I fill in a form in Portugal I can see this confusion in the people who drew it up.
 

Slothrop

Tight but Polite
English people think food in America is terrible. American people think food in England is terrible.
 
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