… that may (or may not) be of interest.
Just a few examples. In my personal case, American Indians (Cherokees) influenced my European forebears by marrying them. By the time I came along, that influence had been lost in the past (I look plain vanilla white but it’s unmistakable in photos of some older generations of my family) but the internet has helped me recover some information about it.
Indian names liberally sprinkle our landscape. These sub-cultures influenced our food/diet. Foodwise, one of the best things the Indians gave us is corn, and one of the best things the slaves gave us is okra. Succotash, gumbo… fried okra, creamed corn…You get the idea.
Although the Founders of the government were operating form a European Christian standpoint, and knew models from that tradition, their creation was as much a rejection of European government (royalty, peerage) as adherence to it. Some people say the Iroquois Confederation influenced the kind of government the Founders gave us; some say they didn’t.
But the cultures of the Indians and Europeans clashed more than they meshed.
Africans — music, speech patterns, story-telling. Did I mention music? When I was 17 or so, living in Montgomery, Alabama, and racial unrest gripped the country, I was driving across town one day, listening to WBAM Radio (The Big Bam, Rockin’ the CRAdle of the ConfFEDeracy with FIFty THOUSand WATTS of POWer!) and the news had just ended, and a report about racial unrest had me thinking. And I tried to think it out, and I finally came to the conclusion, “Well, it probably would have been better if they had not been brought here.”
About that time, the Big Bam plays Reach Out, I’ll Be Thereby the Four Tops. It was my mostest favoritest song in the whole wide world at the time and it hits me like a slap, “That song wouldn’t exist if they hadn’t come here.” In fact, many of the songs I liked were Motown tunes, and none of them would have come into existence without the presence of blacks here. So I’m driving along trying to think of all the ways it would be different without blacks (and okra was one of the first things to come to mind), and I realized, “My gosh, without them, we’d be just like yankee pablum…” I’ve learned enough since then to recognize some basic difference between Southerners and yankees, much of it based on the differences that existed between the European stocks who settled the different areas before they even came here, but I didn’t know that then. And yes, I recognize that my reasons for appreciating black influence were selfish.
I love black music. Always have. Spirituals, jazz (well, not so much traditional jazz as the more melodic subgenres of it), blues, ragtime, Motown. There are a few I don’t much care for — rap/hip hop, because they don’t have tunes/melodies to speak of, so I don’t consider them music. Black music isn’t the only music I like, but it is among my favorites. In 1956, when I was seven years old, I loved a lot of songs I heard on my aunts’ radio, but two of my favorites were Memories are Made of This by Dean Martin (who spoke Italian only until he was five years old, but I only found that out recently) and Honky Tonk Part 2 by Bill Doggett.
These are pop culture references. I could probably give you lots of other ways these groups influenced American culure if I sat down and thought about it, but I’m posting here while I’m trying to finish writing a novella, and that’s what my mind is on.
The difference between that and today is that much of multiculturalism, immigration, and similar/related issues are being deliberately engineered to target the dominant culture, which the targeters perceive to be “white” culture, which they think makes it worthy of reduction or elimination.