My American Boy-Photograph by Kirsty Mattson.
I was actually going to name this post as ‘The Americanisation of my son’ with maybe the use of ‘z’ not ‘s’ in Americansation to be, well a little ironic.
But then I decided (My) American Boy would be catchier and those googling Estelle’s classic featuring Kanye might just stumble on my ramblings and come to appreciate the cultural imperialism of the US over kids in Britain today. You still with me? This gets better, don’t worry.
So the other day, I noticed Oliver, just 4 (going on 14 or maybe even 44 he’s that frustratingly mature at times) calls ‘films’, ‘movies’ (*gasp) and probably not surprisingly with the amount of quite frankly brilliant American erm films he watches along with these other terms:
airplane as well saying aeroplane
cookies for biscuits (guilty too)
Garbage truck (dustbin truck)
Sprinkles (hundreds and thousands)
OK it’s not an incredible amount of Americanised words but it’s recently become obvious to me. The list of films he loves and returns to are American (and that’s more an indication of the US dominance over the struggling British film industry than anything else)-the US majors dominate kids’ films so the list usually involves Despicable Me 1 and 2, Finding Nemo, Wall-E, Tangled (you get the ‘picture’)…
And let me add these are magnificient films, emotive, cathartic, stimulating movies (I love this word too). (My son’s hair is also inspired by the American Gap style and I love a boy with long hair).
…We do also watch Cbeebies of course, good Old Aunty Beeb informing whiles entertaining (always and forever more) but the ones currently having the biggest impact on his ever expanding vocabulary seem to be US derived or maybe it just seems that way as they’re more unusual so apparent.
Let’s not forget kids are sponges, soaking up all that is around them.
There’s nothing wrong with any of this of course but it’s fascinating to me, in the same way my son is picking up the Greek language (I’m originally Greek) daily, the media is influencing him in ways I never previously considered.
At least if we do ever move to LA one day, (as we often discuss), he’ll fit right in with the other kids ‘in class’.
Right I’m off to watch a movie now!