Beginners Guide to De-centering the USA in Your Writing:
• Prefer metric and SI units.
• Specify all units, including currency (“$5.00 USD” instead of just “$5.00”).
• Use “USA” as a descriptor instead of “American” when you actually mean “from the USA” and not “from North America or South America”.
• Don’t assume your experiences are universal.
When talking about politics, make the distinction between State and government: the first is the permanent institution, the last the people who are governing at a given time.
Also remember that not all countries are organised federally, so in most cases, "State" (with capital S) refers to what in the US is frequently called "federal government".
@Sapphicgiraffic also my pet peeve, when people talk about where they're from, most people will say the country, but Americans will say the state
nothing wrong with it on its own, but the trends imply a "our geography is more prestigious" attitude, like if i said which voivodship i'm from, you probably don't even know what the fuck a voivodship is
@kiilas you’re right, idk what that is
@kiilas @Sapphicgiraffic Trevor Noah said that, until he moved to the US, he saw it as one monolithic country. After living in it for many years, he now realizes that it is at least 50 different countries pretending to be one big country.
Personally I think that might be a better explanation for why people identify by State rather than we see it as some sort of prestige thing. We tend to only be affected day to day by things on a state level.
@meena @kiilas @Sapphicgiraffic Yeah, that's pretty accurate. Theres a lot of US-exceptionalism playing into that (we're the greatest country in the world, why should we care what happens in the rest of the world?) as well as a lot of obscuratanism carefully fostered by our right wing so they can keep doing what they want internationally without bad publicity at home.
@kiilas It took me several seconds to understand that "voivodship" was not a mistype. Then it dawned on me it was voevodstvo. :)
... Poland? :)
@Sapphicgiraffic You could also do US$5.00 as an alternative currency format
@Sapphicgiraffic don't use your fucking state abbreviation when introducing yourself on the internet. When someone does it, I always throw mine in the pile and people are confused because NI obviously isn't a US state
@Sapphicgiraffic another gripe to the pile - when americans use 'domestic' to refer to the US and 'international' to refer to 'not the US', when they're not talking about like, the economy, just normal stuff and will even do this when among an international audience ￢_￢
@Sapphicgiraffic reminds me of an US-american professor who did a talk at the European (!) Geosciences Union Assembly and illustrated his entire talk with a seemingly "helpful" example that we should all relate to, while actually it was super US-centric. It was about water distribution in agricultural landscapes and it seemd like he also assumed arable land was irrigated land which was just ?!?! to most middle Europeans (the largest share of the conference)
@Sapphicgiraffic also in international groups/boards, I sometimes get advice like "you can get that at Sally's" or people get upset when I'm not using both cm & inch or °C/°F while they never add both.
I would really appreciate it if more people followed your advice and not think only people from outside the US need to say what country they live in and also not automatically assume the person they talk/write to is US-american too.
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