Slide 2: Thesis
Americans understand themselves to be independent people, but are actually indecisive and allow popular culture and fear of social rejection to influence their lives.
Slide 3: Popular Culture & Social Rejection
Popular culture is the entirety of ideas, perspectives, attitudes, memes, images, and other phenomena that are preferred by the general public. Popular culture exists in music, newspapers, magazines, online, in sports, entertainment, advertising, and television. The advancements in technology have allowed popular culture to take over mass media. Social rejection occurs when a person is deliberately left out of a social relationship or interaction, usually because they have a different opinion or idea than that particular group. Because humans rely on social groups to survive and have evolved to live in cooperative societies, we must avoid social rejection. Popular culture and social rejection diminish the idea of independent Americans.
Slide 4: Indecisiveness
Americans are generally indecisive and many struggle with making decisions. When decisions need to be made, the people that struggle must turn to the opinions of their friends and families and sometimes popular culture, to help them make that decision. What should I wear? What kind of car should I get? What music should I listen to? What are my plans this weekend? All of these are questions that people ask other people to make their decisions. Why? Some genuinely may need help, but many people just want to hear the opinion of others to verify what others will think before actually making the decision. Decisions are an extremely important part of life, and there is a ton of pressure to make the right one. Those that can make those decisions without help seem to be the leaders and innovators, while the indecisive follow along.
Slide 5: Deadly Combination
Our need to be socially accepted along with the fear of social rejection, indecisiveness and popular culture creates a pressure to conform. No one wants to be socially rejected therefore if they have different views or opinions, they will keep them quiet so they are not excluded from social relationships. The fear of being rejected causes people to be vulnerable to the influences of popular culture. Instead of being independent, Americans are far more likely to follow mass media trends and see what everyone else is doing through social networks.
Slide 6: Opposing View
Oppositions to this viewpoint believe that Americans ARE independent and self-reliant. They say children are taught from childhood “to stand on their own to feet,” meaning to be independent, but even from childhood, there is much influence to be had on developing minds, whether from their family or from