Considered the change of my perception of the United States, most influential part of this program is framework lectures and dialogue classes. Listening to various kinds of cultural topic every day and thinking about it to realize it clearly was very precious and hot. Before I came to U.S. for the first time, I had imagined that the United States is huge but not so much deep. I mean since U.S. declared the independence later than other foreign countries, U.S. has a little content originally. Also, I saw U.S. like having strong power and liberty. I had expected that I could be surprised at the big scale of America and I guess that most of Japanese who have not been to the United States have this suggestion. However, my experience is something different from my image actually. Thanks to this program and all of smart professors and CIs, I could learn the core part of U.S. which I would never have touched if I had not participated this program. They taught me that the United States is structured by unique and deep contents, for instance, race, gender or religious. Now I look U.S. not only simply strong but also complicated. My perception has been changed into the perception looked by inside of U.S. instead of just foreigner’s one. Moreover, our focus group study influenced me after having arrived at the William and Mary university. Our presentation goal has changed into more logical one. Our presentation is about food service, and we had already compared cultural difference between the U.S. and Japan while preparing it in Japan, but we came to find that the cultural difference had “context” meaning. This finding was great and memorable.
I learned lots of things about the United States. Among all those wonderful studies, I was especially impressed by slavery history and modern gender problem.Though I used to wonder that the way people regard their social group by the difference of skin color is a strange and silly thing, that is the most simple and rational way to distinguish people from people and that is sociology. Slavery is not simple issue that white people are evil. I found that this was my stereotype of slavery and I did not have so much knowledge on each topic. Field trip to slave trail was very helpful. About gender problem, I basically accept that a person has a right to live as they want to behave. But, to keep country in good order, people have to act in a certain form. New lifestyle or new life frame can bring a cause of social uncertainty. I learned that it is necessary to regulate some levels of rule as we permit LGBTQ. Since I like to understand humanity, I see racial or sexual topic valuable to investigate. In this point, the United States is best because there is a great diversity. America is rich in researching people itself.
One thing I would still like to learn about U.S. is a gender topic because, from the point of Japanese view, U.S. is more developed and complicated about sexuality and genderism than Japan. Even if Japanese perspective of sexuality has changed better, women’s work has less impact than men and there are many women who have a problem to balance both business and private life. In addition, I consider that Gender is worth thinking deeply to make coming future better. This is modern problem. I always feel women have strong social power. Women should be active in society in both U.S. and Japan. I think Japan should respect for American free or open thought about women, and then we should find how to realize sexual freedom according to Japanese society. So, at first, I will read the book which Ravynn gave me and understand American sexuality. Since I imagine that in the future, I might get a job in the United States, I want to study about American society by reading many articles about it. Another thing I would still like to learn about U.S. is terrorist group such as KKK. I did not know the existence of KKK. I need to search more about people who act against society because whenever we live, anti-social accident will be continued. U.S. has most huge power all over the world and Japan relies on its army, so I am interested in some movement occurred by those who are racially poor.
During the days in Williamsburg, I leaned about American culture scholarly. And I stayed in sub-urban town. Moving to Washington D.C., I experienced an actual American life. The capital of the United States was just a city. Living in two kinds of lifestyle in one time is very precious. If I have simply been to the U.S., I could not have these experiences. The embassy visit, it was a special time. Communicating with Japanese people who are working in the U.S. is one of the thing that I wanted to do in America. It emphasized me to learn hard and see a lot of things all over the world. I come to have more kind of selections how to act in the society as one Japanese person. In addition, I feel good toward the idea that American people have like they accept any opinions. They made me tell my own opinion even if I think my opinion is tiny and narrow. I thought that America has kinder atmosphere to speak than Japan. Though I found many comparison between U.S. and Japan, the most attractive one is diversity of America. Next time I visit the U.S., I will bring my individual life goal.