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April 16, 2013

Voices Abroad: Four Students Blog from Around the Globe

At St. Edward's, we believe that a global perspective is imperative for a 21st century education. We help students expand their world views outside of the Austin campus by providing opportunities to connect and learn from others abroad.  

This Spring we have four students sharing their study abroad experiences by blogging for the university's student newspaper Hilltop Views. The bloggers include English Writing and Rhetoric majors Willa Goldberg (Durban, South Africa), Jenna Jaco (Bucheon, South Korea) and Hannah Thornby (Angers, France), as well as Philosophy major Caitlin Maples (Koblenz, Germany).  

Below is an excerpt from Hannah Thornby blogging from Angers, France.

ANGERS: What Europeans talk about when they talk about America

Having lived in Europe for the last three months, I tend to perk up when I hear of the homeland.

Whether it is someone speaking in an American accent or mentions of the Etats-Unis, my attention is caught faster than a street crepe stand.

I suppose this is, in part, because I miss home and welcome familiar conversation. Yet it is also true that as fascinating as it is to study French culture, it is perhaps even more interesting to study how the French or Europeans study American culture.

Whenever I hear a European start to speak about America or Americans, I just want to know all they know and think. There are so many different things within our media and our politics that could inform their opinion. Did they watch Spielberg's Lincoln, Tarentino's Django, or the most recent American Pie? What does their image of Americans come from? The news? "The Simpsons?" Rumours of Walmart? The NFL?

It is a thoroughly strange and new experience for me to realize that I too have a culture that can be studied. I am not sure it is something I will ever get used to. In fact, I cannot imagine feeling anything but strange when I find others trying to comment on America. No matter what, I always tend to find what they choose to study or what they already know odd. …

 

Learn about the odd examples of Americana Thornby has encountered in Europe. Continue reading her blog post here. See exciting updates from all of the student bloggers at Hilltop Views “Voices Abroad” page here.

 

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