The Ugly American

Sophomore (College 2nd year) ・Art ・MLA ・2 Sources

The novel 'The Ugly American,' written by Burdick and Lederer, exposed the American government's actions in Asia. Poor public relations, inappropriate diplomatic appointments, and wrongdoing in foreign countries were exposed, causing concern within the state for its reputation and hate on the international stage. Readers wonder why the country looks ugly to the writers and citizens while being a source of misery for the administration. This paper explores whether the writers think America is disgusting, whether they have a case and the appeal of non-ugly Americans.

The American establishment is fighting to avoid losing the cold war with Asia. The state coupled this with the ideas of forcing the countries to adopt the reactions against communism (Lederer & Burdick 5). In their strategy, the American diplomatic system did not take the steps of changing the people and their cultures. It wanted to force the states to develop new styles of leadership without cultural changes (Eric 930). An understanding of the local cultures was a necessary step in realizing the dream of complete change and influence in the local political structures that would modify the people’s mindsets and inform them of knowing the needs of a government change, from communism to capitalism. That was the ugly part of America, ignorance of local culture.

“Give me Liberty,” records in Chapter 24 the different approaches the States of America and Asia the different ideologies exchanged in the times. The countries needed to share ideas about doctrines set in their countries. Unfortunately, America had something different to say. Vice President chronicled this when he traveled to open a showroom in Moscow (Eric 930). His message was a superior country to the Soviet, which went against the reasons for exchanging ideas. These portrayed America uglier than the world thought. The writers indicate: “The men calling themselves Communists say that the soul and the State are identical. The price of being a Communist is that you must give them your heart and your will,” (46). America was not ready to give their hearts, most probably.

I think the authors were right in their points about America. The ideologies America needed to pass were to share and not to force change within countries. Developing trust between countries failed when they decided to give information about the American style of leadership that was portraying one region as superior to others. In developing such crucial relations after struggles, it does not call for a display of superiority issues as the Americans did.

I do not find the non-ugly Americans beautiful. The portrayal of some filth within the international relations and development dirties the entire image. All good and wonderful ideas change when the selfish promotions of America as excellent charred most purposes of remaining in clean relationships. When such links spoil, they become difficult to restore and give a different image of people being neither clean nor attractive.

In conclusion, the authors portray the aspects of the American government and individuals who decided to take opportunities and dwarf the images of other countries. They misused chances while ignoring the cultures people developed. If the people had promoted the universal exchange of ideas, the Americans would retain the right image about the countries. I do not think the people who remained right were beautiful as the entire image was already spoilt.

Works Cited

Eric, Foner. Give me Liberty: An American History. W. W. Norton, 2017.

Lederer, William, and Eugene Burdick. The Ugly American. Tandem Library, 1999.

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