American exceptionalism

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German professor Sieglinde Lemke argues that the Statue of Liberty represents how the US sees itself as a unique nation and its mission to spread its values across the world.[1]

American exceptionalism is the belief that

  1. the US is unique and special[2]
  2. the US has a unique mission to transform the world
  3. the US is superior to other nations because of its unique history and mission

Unique nation[change | change source]

The US started from the American Revolutionary War. Martin Lipset calls it the "first new nation".[3] It developed an American set of ideas (Americanism) based on republicanism, democracy, laissez-faire (no government interference in economy), liberty, equality, individualism (importance of individual).[4]

Unique mission[change | change source]

Abraham Lincoln said in the Gettysburg address (1863), that Americans have a responsibility to make sure that the "government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Winfried Fluck; Donald E. Pease; John Carlos Rowe (2011). Re-framing the Transnational Turn in American Studies. University Press of New England. p. 207. ISBN 9781611681901.
  2. American Exceptionalism: A Double-Edged Sword. Seymour Martin Lipset. New York, N.Y.: W.W. Norton & Co., Inc. 1996. p. 18. .
  3. Seymour Martin Lipset, The first new nation (1963).
  4. Lipset, American Exceptionalism, pp. 1, 17–19, 165–74, 197