Estados Unidos

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Estados Unidos de América
Bandera Gran Sello
Lema: In God We Trust    (Oficial)
E Pluribus Unum    (Tradicional)
( latín : De muchos, uno)
Himno: " The Star-Spangled Banner "
Capital Washington, DC
38 ° 53'N 77 ° 01'W / 38.883 ° N 77.017 ° W / 38.883, -77.017
La ciudad más grande New York City
Idiomas oficiales Ninguno a nivel federal [a]
El idioma nacional Inglés ( de facto ) [b]
Demonym Americano
Gobierno Federal presidencial república constitucional ,
Sistema bipartidista
- Presidente Barack Obama ( D )
- Vice Presidente Joe Biden ( D )
- Presidente de la Cámara John Boehner ( R )
- Presidente del Tribunal Supremo John Roberts
Legislatura Congreso
- Cámara alta Senado
- Cámara Baja Cámara de los Representantes
Independencia del Reino de Gran Bretaña
- Declarado 04 de julio 1776
- Reconocido 03 de septiembre 1783
- Constitución actual 21 de junio 1788
Área
- Total 9.826.675 kilometros 2 [1] [c] ( 3rd/4th )
3.794.101 millas cuadradas
- Agua (%) 6,76
Población
- 2012 estimación 315.544.000 [2] ( tercera )
- Densidad 34.2/kilómetro 2
88.6/sq mi
PIB ( PPA ) 2012 estimación
- Total $ 15,6097 billón [3] ( primera )
- Per cápita $ 49.601 [3] ( sexta )
PIB (nominal) 2012 estimación
- Total $ 15,6097 billón [3] ( primera )
- Per cápita $ 49.601 [3] ( 15a )
Gini (2011) 47,7 [4] / 39 (2009) )
HDI (2011) Aumentar 0,910 [5] (muy alto / cuarto )
Moneda Dólar estadounidense ($) ( USD )
Huso horario ( UTC -5 a -10)
- Verano ( DST ) ( UTC -4 a -10 [e] )
Unidades en el derecho
Prefijo telefónico 1
ISO 3166 EE.UU.
Dominio Internet . Nosotros . gov . mil . edu
^ a. Inglés es el idioma oficial de al menos 28 estados, algunas fuentes dan cifras más altas, a partir de diferentes definiciones de "oficial". [6] Inglés y hawaiano son los dos idiomas oficiales en el estado de Hawaii .

^ b. Inglés es el idioma de facto del gobierno americano y el único idioma hablado en el hogar en un 80 por ciento de los estadounidenses mayores de cinco años o más. español es el segundo idioma más hablado .

^ c. Si los Estados Unidos o China, es más grande que se disputó . La cifra indicada es de los EE.UU. Agencia Central de Inteligencia 's The World Factbook . Otras fuentes dan cifras menores. Todos los cálculos de autoridad de las dimensiones del país son sólo los 50 estados y el Distrito de Columbia, no los territorios.

^ d. La población estimada es de las personas cuya residencia habitual se encuentra en los cincuenta estados y el Distrito de Columbia, con independencia de su nacionalidad. No se incluyen las personas que viven en los territorios, que asciende a más de 4 millones de personas (en su mayoría en Puerto Rico ).

^ e. Ver vez en los Estados Unidos para obtener más información acerca de las leyes que regulan las zonas de tiempo en los Estados Unidos.

^ f. No incluye las zonas insulares y de los Estados Unidos Islas menores alejadas , que tienen sus propias ISO 3166 códigos.

Los Estados Unidos de América (EE.UU. o EE.UU.), comúnmente llamado los Estados Unidos (EE.UU. o EE.UU.) y en América, es un federal república constitucional consistente en cincuenta estados y un distrito federal . [1] El país se ubica en el centro de América del Norte , donde su cuarenta y ocho estados contiguos y Washington, DC , la capital del distrito , se encuentran entre el Pacífico y el Atlántico , bordeado por el Canadá al norte y México al sur. El estado de Alaska está situado en la parte noroeste del continente, con Canadá a su este y Rusia al oeste a través del estrecho de Bering . El estado de Hawái es un archipiélago en medio del Pacífico. El país también posee varios territorios en el Pacífico y el Caribe . , 3,79 millones de kilómetros cuadrados (9,83 millones de km 2) y con alrededor de 315 millones de personas, los Estados Unidos es el país de tercera o cuarta más grande por área total y el tercero más grande en superficie terrestre tanto y población . Es una de las más del mundo de diversidad étnica y multicultural naciones, producto de la gran inmigración de muchos países . [7] La geografía y el clima de los Estados Unidos es también muy diversa y es el hogar de una gran variedad de especies.

Paleoindios emigraron de Asia a lo que hoy es el territorio continental de los Estados Unidos alrededor de 15.000 años atrás. Después de 1500, del Viejo Mundo las enfermedades introducidas por los europeos reducido considerablemente sus poblaciones. colonización europea comenzó alrededor de 1600 y provenían principalmente de Inglaterra. Los Estados Unidos emergieron de trece colonias británicas situadas a lo largo de la costa atlántica, que desarrolló sus propias economías y sistemas políticos democráticos. Las disputas entre Gran Bretaña y las colonias americanas llevaron a la Revolución Americana . El 4 de julio de 1776, los delegados de las 13 colonias por unanimidad, emitió la Declaración de la Independencia , que estableció los Estados Unidos de América. Con la ayuda de Francia, el nuevo país derrotó a Gran Bretaña en la Guerra de la Independencia , que se convirtió en el éxito de la primera guerra de independencia contra un imperio europeo . [8] [9] La actual Constitución fue aprobada el 17 de septiembre de 1787; varias enmiendas fueron posteriormente añadida a la Constitución, la modificación de sus efectos, pero no cambiar el texto original. Las primeras diez enmiendas, colectivamente llamado la Declaración de Derechos , que garantizan muchos derechos fundamentales y las libertades civiles , fueron ratificados en 1791.

Impulsada por la doctrina de destino manifiesto , los Estados Unidos se embarcó en una vigorosa expansión en América del Norte durante el siglo 19, desplazando a las tribus nativas, la adquisición de nuevos territorios, y poco a poco admitir nuevos estados. La Guerra Civil estadounidense terminó con la esclavitud legalizada en los Estados Unidos. A finales del siglo XIX, la economía nacional estadounidense era la más grande del mundo. [10] La Guerra Española-Americana y la Primera Guerra Mundial confirmaron el estatus del país como una potencia militar mundial. Los Estados Unidos emergieron de la Segunda Guerra Mundial como potencia mundial y como el primer país con armas nucleares y un miembro permanente del Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas . El final de la Guerra Fría y la disolución de la Unión Soviética dejó a Estados Unidos como la única superpotencia .

Los Estados Unidos es un post-industrial país desarrollado y tiene la más grande del mundo la economía nacional, con un estimado de 2012 el PIB de 15,6 billón dólares [3] - el 19% del PIB global en paridad de poder adquisitivo ., a partir de 2011 [11] [12 ] El PIB per cápita de los EE.UU. fue el mundo el sexto más alto a partir de 2010. [3] La economía está impulsada por la abundancia de recursos naturales, una infraestructura bien desarrollada y una alta productividad, y mientras su economía se considera post- industrial sigue siendo uno de los mayores fabricantes del mundo. El país registra un 41% de los gastos militares mundiales , [13] y es una fuerza líder económico, político y cultural en el mundo, así como un líder en la investigación científica y la innovación tecnológica. [14] [15]

Contenido

Etimología

En 1507, el alemán cartógrafo Martin Waldseemüller produjo un mapa del mundo en la que llamó las tierras del Hemisferio Occidental "América" ​​después de explorador y cartógrafo italiano Amerigo Vespucci . [16]

La primera prueba documental de la frase "Estados Unidos de América" ​​fue en un ensayo escrito anónimo publicado en la Gaceta Virginia periódico en Williamsburg, Virginia 6 de abril de 1776. [17] [18] En junio de 1776, Thomas Jefferson incluyó la frase "ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMERICA" con todas las letras en mayúsculas en el título de su "proyecto original Rough" de la Declaración de la Independencia . [19] [20] En la final del Cuatro de Julio versión de la Declaración, la sección pertinente del título era para que diga: "La Declaración unánime de los trece Estados Unidos de América". [21]

En 1777 los Artículos de la Confederación anunció: "El estilo de esta Confederación será" Los Estados Unidos de América '". [22]

La forma abreviada "Estados Unidos" también es estándar. Otras formas comunes incluyen el "EE.UU.", el "EE.UU." y "América". Nombres coloquiales incluyen el "de EE.UU. de A." y, a nivel internacional, los "Estados". " Columbia ", un nombre popular en la poesía y las canciones de finales de 1700, [23] deriva su origen de Cristóbal Colón , sino que aparece en el nombre de " Distrito de Columbia ".

La manera estándar de referirse a un ciudadano de los Estados Unidos es como un " americano ". "Estados Unidos", "americano" y "EE.UU." se utiliza para referirse al país como adjetivo ("valores americanos", "fuerzas de EE.UU."). " americano "se utiliza raramente en Inglés para referirse a temas no relacionados con los Estados Unidos. [24]

La frase "Estados Unidos" fue tratado inicialmente como plural, una descripción de un conjunto de estados independientes-por ejemplo, "los Estados Unidos están", incluido en la Decimotercera Enmienda a la Constitución de los Estados Unidos , ratificada en 1865. Se hizo común a tratarla como singular, una sola unidad-por ejemplo, "los Estados Unidos"-después del final de la Guerra Civil. La forma singular es ahora estándar, la forma plural se conserva en la expresión "estos Estados Unidos". [25] La diferencia se ha descrito como más significativo que uno de uso, sino que refleja la diferencia entre una colección de estados y una unidad. [26]

En idiomas distintos del inglés, el nombre se traduce con frecuencia como la traducción de cualquiera de los "Estados Unidos" o "Estados Unidos" y coloquialmente como "América". Además, una sigla se utiliza a veces. [27]

Historia

Asentamiento nativo americano y europeo

Los pueblos indígenas de la parte continental de EE.UU., emigraron de Asia , a partir de hace entre 40.000 y 12.000 años. [28] Algunos, como la pre-colombino cultura del Mississippi , desarrollado avanzado la agricultura, la gran arquitectura, y las sociedades de nivel estatal. Después de exploradores y comerciantes europeos establecieron los primeros contactos, muchos millones de personas murieron de epidemias de enfermedades importadas como la viruela . [29]

Plymouth, New England 1620. El Pacto del Mayflower hecha por los colonos peregrinos trajeron las formas democráticas de gobierno a la nueva tierra.
Columbia era una imagen poética de los Estados Unidos, en gran parte desplazados después de 1920 por la Estatua de la Libertad

Los primeros exploradores españoles desembarcaron en " La Florida ", en 1513. España estableció asentamientos en California y Nuevo México, que se fusionaron con el tiempo en los EE.UU. También había algunos asentamientos franceses a lo largo del río Mississippi.

Las colonias inglesas hacia arriba y abajo de la costa del Atlántico fueron, con mucho, el más importante en la conformación de la historia de los Estados Unidos. La colonia de Virginia comenzó 1607 y el Pilgrims ' Colonia de Plymouth en 1620. Unos 100.000 puritanos llegaron a Nueva Inglaterra , especialmente la Massachusetts Bay Colony . A partir de 1614, los holandeses se establecieron en el actual Estado de Nueva York; su colonia de Nueva Holanda pasó a manos de Inglaterra en 1674, pero una fuerte influencia holandesa persiste en el norte del valle de Hudson de la ciudad de Nueva York durante generaciones. Muchos nuevos inmigrantes, especialmente a los del sur , fueron contratados los funcionarios -unos dos tercios de todos los inmigrantes en Virginia entre 1630 y 1680. [30] Por la vuelta del siglo 18, los esclavos africanos se estaban convirtiendo en la principal fuente de trabajo en servidumbre en muchas regiones . [31]

Con la división 1729 de las Carolinas y la colonización 1732 de Georgia , las trece colonias británicas que se convertirían en los Estados Unidos de América se establecieron. [32] Todos tenían los gobiernos locales con elecciones abiertas a la mayoría de los hombres libres, con una devoción creciente a la antiguos derechos de los ingleses y un sentido de auto-apoyo del gobierno para estimular el republicanismo. Todo legalizado el comercio de esclavos africanos . [33] Con altas tasas de natalidad, las tasas de mortalidad son bajas y la inmigración constante, la población colonial creció rápidamente. El evangelista cristiano movimiento de las décadas de 1730 y 1740 conocido como el Gran Despertar impulsado el interés en la religión y la libertad religiosa.

En la Guerra Francesa e India , las fuerzas británicas tomaron Canadá de los franceses, pero la francófona población permaneció políticamente aislada de las colonias del sur. Excluyendo los nativos americanos , que estaban siendo desplazados, esos trece colonias tenía una población de 2,6 millones en 1770, aproximadamente un tercio de la de Gran Bretaña. Casi una quinta parte de los que viven en lo que se convertiría en los Estados Unidos eran esclavos negros. [34]

La expansión hacia el oeste Inglés vi incorporación de diferentes culturas pre-establecidos se reunió. Pero también encontró resistencia amerindio a dicha liquidación. Su oposición adoptó diversas formas en todo el continente, como aliados con los europeos, las naciones de varias tribus, y solo por la reubicación y en guerra, los tratados y los tribunales. Por otro lado, el inglés de América del Norte colonos estaban sujetos a impuestos británicos , no tenían representación en el Parlamento de Gran Bretaña .

Independencia y expansión

La Revolución Americana fue la primera guerra de la independencia colonial exitoso contra una potencia europea. Los estadounidenses han desarrollado un sistema democrático de gobierno local y una ideología de "republicanismo" que mantenía el gobierno se basaba en la voluntad del pueblo (no el rey), que se opuso firmemente a la corrupción y exigieron la virtud cívica. Ellos exigieron sus derechos como ingleses y británicos rechazaron los esfuerzos para imponer impuestos sin la aprobación de las legislaturas coloniales. Los ingleses insistieron y el conflicto escaló a una guerra total en 1775, la Guerra de la Independencia Americana . [35] El 14 de junio de 1775, el Congreso Continental , reunido en Filadelfia , estableció un Ejército Continental bajo el mando de George Washington . [36 ] Al proclamar que " todos los hombres son creados iguales "y dotado de" ciertos derechos inalienables ", el Congreso aprobó la Declaración de Independencia , redactada en gran parte por Thomas Jefferson , el 4 de julio de 1776. Esta fecha se celebra anualmente en Estados Unidos Día de la Independencia . En 1777, los Artículos de la Confederación estableció un gobierno débil, que funcionó hasta 1789. [37]

Declaración de Independencia de 1776. Por la autoridad del pueblo, trece estados fueron liberados de la Corona Británica
EE.UU. adquirido territorio gobernado por el Congreso, a continuación, los colonos fueron admitidos como estados sobre la base de la igualdad de ciudadanía

Después de la derrota británica en Yorktown por las fuerzas estadounidenses con la asistencia de los franceses , los Estados Unidos era independiente. En el Tratado de Paz de 1783 Gran Bretaña reconoció la soberanía estadounidense sobre el este de más territorio del río Mississippi . Nacionalistas piden un gobierno federal más fuerte con la competencia fiscal llevó a la convención constitucional en 1787. Tras un intenso debate la Constitución de Estados Unidos fue ratificada en 1788 por los 13 estados. El primer Senado, Cámara de Representantes , y el presidente George-Washington-asumió el cargo en 1789.The Declaración de Derechos , que prohibía la restricción federal de las libertades personales y la garantía de una serie de protecciones legales , se adoptó en 1791. [38]

Las actitudes hacia la esclavitud fueron cambiando; todos los estados fuera de la ley el comercio internacional de esclavos, [39] y el gobierno federal tipificado como delito la importación o exportación de esclavos en 1807. [40] Todos los estados del Norte abolieron la esclavitud entre 1780 y 1804, dejando a los estados esclavistas de el Sur como defensores de la " peculiar institución ". Con un cultivo de plantación de algodón altamente rentable a partir de 1820, los blancos del sur cada vez más decidido esclavitud era un buen positiva para todos, incluyendo a los esclavos. [41] El Segundo Gran Despertar , comenzando alrededor de 1800, millones convertidos a los evangélicos protestantes. En el norte energizadas múltiples movimientos de reforma social, incluyendo el abolicionismo . [42]

Deseo de los estadounidenses a expandirse hacia el oeste provocó una larga serie de guerras indias . [43] La compra de Luisiana de Francia-afirmó territorio bajo la presidencia de Thomas Jefferson en 1803 casi duplicó el tamaño de la nación. [44] La guerra de 1812 , declaró en contra de Gran Bretaña sobre diversos grievancnbsp; millones de personas (en su mayoría en Puerto Rico ).

^ e. Ver vez en los Estados Unidos para obtener más información acerca de las leyes que regulan las zonas de tiempo en los Estados Unidos.

^ f. No incluye las zonas insulares y de los Estados Unidos Islas menores alejadas , que tienen sus propias ISO 3166 códigos. }} Es y luchó por un empate, el fortalecimiento de nacionalismo EE.UU.. [45] Una serie de incursiones militares de Estados Unidos en Florida dirigido por España a ceder su territorio y otro costa del Golfo en 1819. [46]

El presidente Andrew Jackson asumió la presidencia en 1829, y comenzó una serie de reformas que llevaron a la era de la democracia jacksoniana , el cual se considera que se prolongó desde 1830 hasta 1850. Esto incluye muchas reformas, como la más amplia sufragio masculino, y varios ajustes en el poder del gobierno federal. Esto también condujo a la aparición de la Sistema de segundas partes , que se refiere a los partidos dominantes que han existido desde 1828 hasta 1854.

El Camino de las Lágrimas en la década de 1830 ejemplifica la eliminación indio política que se movía indios a sus propias reservas con subvenciones anuales del Gobierno. Los Estados Unidos se anexó la República de Texas en 1845, en medio de un período en que el concepto de Destino Manifiesto fue haciendo popular. [47] El 1846 Tratado de Oregón con Inglaterra llevó a EE.UU. el control de la actual América del Noroeste . [48] Los EE.UU. la victoria en la guerra mexicana-americano dio lugar a la cesión 1848 de California y gran parte de la actual suroeste de Estados Unidos . [49]

La fiebre del oro de California de 1848 a 1849 más estimulado la migración occidental. [50] Nueva ferrocarril hizo más fácil reubicación de los colonos y conflictos crecientes con los nativos americanos. [51] Durante medio siglo, hasta 40 millones de bisonte americano o búfalo, fueron sacrificados para las pieles y la carne y para facilitar la difusión de los ferrocarriles ". [52] La pérdida de los búfalos, un recurso primario para el indios de las llanuras , fue un golpe existencial para muchas culturas indígenas. [52]

La esclavitud, la guerra civil y la industrialización

Las tensiones entre los estados libres y esclavos monta con argumentos sobre la relación entre los gobiernos estatales y federales , así como los conflictos violentos por la expansión de la esclavitud en los nuevos estados. [53] Abraham Lincoln , candidato del antiesclavista en gran parte del Partido Republicano , fue elegido presidente en 1860. [54] Antes de asumir el cargo, los siete estados esclavistas declararon su secesión, que el gobierno federal mantiene era ilegal-y formaron la Confederación de Estados de América . [55]

Batalla de Gettysburg . La Guerra Civil cimentó la Unión e industria de acero y estimuló la construcción del ferrocarril intercontinental.
Ellis Island . Costa Este inmigrantes trabajaban en las fábricas, los ferrocarriles y las minas, y ha creado la demanda de la agricultura industrializada.

Con la Confederación ataque a Fort Sumter , la Guerra Civil comenzó y otros cuatro estados esclavistas se unió a la Confederación. [55] Lincoln Proclamación de Emancipación en 1863 declarados esclavos en la Confederación de ser libre. A raíz de la Unión la victoria en 1865, tres enmiendas a la Constitución de los EE.UU. garantiza la libertad de los casi cuatro millones afroamericanos que habían sido esclavos, [56] los hizo ciudadanos , y les dio derecho de voto . La guerra y su resolución dio lugar a un aumento sustancial en el poder federal . [57] La guerra sigue siendo el conflicto más mortífero en la historia de Estados Unidos, que provocó la muerte de 620.000 soldados. [58]

Después de la guerra, el asesinato de Abraham Lincoln radicalizados republicanos Reconstrucción políticas encaminadas a la reintegración y la reconstrucción de los estados sureños garantizando al mismo tiempo los derechos de los esclavos recién liberados. [59] La resolución de la disputa electoral presidencial de 1876 por el Compromiso de 1877 terminó la Reconstrucción; las leyes de Jim Crow pronto marginados muchos afroamericanos . [59]

En el Norte, la urbanización sin precedentes y una afluencia de inmigrantes procedentes de Europa del Sur y del Este aceleró la industrialización del país . La ola de la inmigración, que duró hasta 1924 , a condición de mano de obra y transformado la cultura estadounidense. [60] desarrollo de la infraestructura nacional impulsado el crecimiento económico. El final de la Guerra Civil estimulado una mayor colonización y el desarrollo del viejo oeste americano . Esto se debió a una serie de desarrollos sociales y tecnológicos, incluyendo la terminación del primer telégrafo transcontinental en 1861 y el primer ferrocarril transcontinental en 1869.

El 1867 compra de Alaska a Rusia completó la expansión continental del país. La Masacre de Wounded Knee en 1890 fue el último gran conflicto armado de las guerras indias. En 1893, la monarquía indígena del Pacífico Reino de Hawái fue derrocado en un golpe de estado liderado por los residentes americanos, los Estados Unidos se anexionó el archipiélago en 1898. La victoria en la Guerra Española-Americana el mismo año demostró que Estados Unidos era una potencia mundial y dio lugar a la anexión de Puerto Rico, Guam y las Filipinas . [61] La Argentina se independizó de medio siglo más tarde, y Puerto Rico Guam siguen siendo territorios de Estados Unidos.

La aparición de muchos empresarios prominentes a finales del siglo 19 dio lugar a la Edad de Oro , un período de creciente riqueza y poder entre la clase empresarial. Esto ayudó a producir la Era Progresista , un período de grandes reformas en muchas áreas de la sociedad, incluida la protección reglamentaria para el público, mayores antimonopolio medidas, y la atención a las condiciones de vida de las clases trabajadoras. El presidente Theodore Roosevelt fue uno de los principales defensores de las reformas progresistas

Primera Guerra Mundial, la Gran Depresión y la Segunda Guerra Mundial

Al estallar la Primera Guerra Mundial en 1914, Estados Unidos se mantuvo neutral. La mayoría de los estadounidenses simpatizaban con los británicos y los franceses, a pesar de que muchos se opusieron a la intervención. [62] En 1917, los Estados Unidos se unieron a los Aliados y las fuerzas expedicionarias americanas ayudaron a cambiar la marea contra las potencias centrales . El presidente Woodrow Wilson tuvo un papel diplomático destacado en la Conferencia de Paz de París de 1919 que ayudó a dar forma al mundo de la post-guerra. Wilson abogó fuertemente por los EE.UU. para unirse a la Liga de las Naciones . Sin embargo, el Senado se negó a aprobar esto, y no ratificó el Tratado de Versalles , que estableció la Sociedad de Naciones . [63]

El 'Dust Bowl' trajo la depresión agrícola, afectado los mercados industriales y condujo a la reubicación grande de las Grandes Llanuras
Segunda Guerra Mundial, la invasión de la industria europea de la guerra necesaria, acelerando la migración a las grandes ciudades y la fabricación a gran escala

El país siguió una política de unilateralismo, al borde de aislacionismo . [63] En 1920, el movimiento de los derechos de la mujer ganó la aprobación de una enmienda constitucional que concede el sufragio femenino . La prosperidad de los años veinte terminó con el desplome de Wall Street de 1929 que desencadenó la Gran Depresión .

Después de su elección como presidente en 1932, Franklin D. Roosevelt respondió con el New Deal , una serie de políticas de aumento de la intervención estatal en la economía, incluyendo el establecimiento de la Seguridad Social sistema. [64] La Dust Bowl de mediados de 1930 empobrecido muchas comunidades agrícolas y provocó una nueva ola de migración occidental.

Los Estados Unidos, efectivamente neutral durante la Segunda Guerra Mundial etapas 's tempranos después de la Alemania nazi invasión de Polonia en septiembre de 1939, comenzó a suministrar material a los aliados marzo 1941 a través del Préstamo y Arriendo programa. El 7 de diciembre de 1941, el Imperio de Japón lanzó una sorpresa ataque a Pearl Harbor , lo que llevó a Estados Unidos a unirse a los aliados contra las potencias del Eje , así como el internamiento de japoneses americanos por miles. [65] La participación en la guerra estimuló capital de inversión y de la capacidad industrial. Entre los principales combatientes, Estados Unidos fue el único país que se hacen más ricos, de hecho, mucho más rico, en lugar de peor a causa de la guerra. [66]

Conferencias aliadas en Bretton Woods y Yalta esbozó un nuevo sistema de organizaciones internacionales que colocan el los Estados Unidos y la Unión Soviética en el centro de los asuntos mundiales. Como la victoria fue ganada en Europa , un 1945 conferencia internacional celebrada en San Francisco produjo la Carta de Naciones Unidas , que entró en actividad después de la guerra. [67] Los Estados Unidos, después de haber desarrollado las primeras armas nucleares , los utilizó en las ciudades japonesas de Hiroshima y Nagasaki en agosto. Japón se rindió el 2 de septiembre, poniendo fin a la guerra. [68]

Guerra Fría y la política de protesta

Martin Luther King, Jr. pronuncia su " I Have a Dream "discurso de 1963
Audio externa
Usted puede ver el discurso, "¿Por qué me opongo a la guerra en Vietnam", de Martin Luther King aquí .

Los Estados Unidos y la Unión Soviética competían por el poder después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial durante la Guerra Fría , dominando los asuntos militares de Europa a través de la OTAN y el Pacto de Varsovia , respectivamente. Mientras se involucraron en guerras de poder y desarrollado poderosos arsenales nucleares, los dos países evitaron un conflicto militar directo. Los EE.UU. a menudo se opuso Tercer Mundo movimientos de izquierda que lo vieron como los soviéticos patrocinado. Las tropas estadounidenses lucharon comunistas chinos y norcoreanos fuerzas en la Guerra de Corea de 1950-53. La Cámara de Actividades Antiamericanas Comité siguió una serie de investigaciones sobre la subversión izquierdista sospechoso, mientras que el senador Joseph McCarthy se convirtió en la cabeza visible del sentimiento anticomunista.

El lanzamiento soviético de 1961 el vuelo espacial tripulado provocó que el presidente John F. Kennedy call 's de los Estados Unidos para ser los primeros en aterrizar "un hombre en la luna" , lograda en 1969. Kennedy también enfrentó un tenso enfrentamiento nuclear con las fuerzas soviéticas en Cuba. Mientras tanto, Estados Unidos experimentó una expansión económica sostenida. En medio de la presencia de varios blancos nacionalistas grupos, en particular el Ku Klux Klan , un creciente movimiento de derechos civiles utilizado no violencia para hacer frente a la segregación y la discriminación. Esto fue simbolizado y dirigido por los estadounidenses negros como Rosa Parks y Martin Luther King Jr., . Por otro lado, algunos negros nacionalistas grupos como el Partido de las Panteras Negro tenía un alcance más militante.

Tras el asesinato de Kennedy en 1963, la Ley de Derechos Civiles de 1964 y la Ley de Derechos Votación de 1965 se aprobaron durante la presidencia de Lyndon B. Johnson . [69] [70] Él también firmó la Ley de Medicare y Medicaid programas. [71] Johnson y su sucesor, Richard Nixon , se expandió una guerra de poder en el sudeste de Asia en la fallida guerra de Vietnam . Un amplio movimiento contracultural creció, impulsado por la oposición a la guerra , el nacionalismo negro y la revolución sexual . Betty Friedan , Gloria Steinem , y otros encabezó una nueva ola de feminismo que buscaba la igualdad política, social y económica de las mujeres.

Como resultado del escándalo Watergate , Nixon en 1974 se convirtió en el primer presidente de EE.UU. a renunciar, para evitar ser enjuiciado por cargos de obstrucción a la justicia y abuso de poder. El Jimmy Carter administración de la década de 1970 estuvo marcada por la estanflación y la crisis de los rehenes de Irán . La elección de Ronald Reagan como presidente en 1980 anunció un cambio hacia la derecha en la política estadounidense , que se refleja en cambios importantes en las prioridades de los impuestos y el gasto . Su segundo mandato trajo tanto el escándalo Irán-Contra y significativo progreso diplomático con la Unión Soviética . El posterior colapso soviético puso fin a la Guerra Fría.

Edad Contemporánea

Bajo la presidencia de George HW Bush , los Estados Unidos tomaron un papel protagónico en la ONU sancionó la Guerra del Golfo . El más largo de expansión económica en la moderna historia de los EE.UU., desde marzo 1991 hasta marzo 2001, abarcó el Bill Clinton administración y la burbuja de las punto-com . [72] Una demanda civil y escándalo sexual llevó a impeachment de Clinton en 1998, pero permaneció en el cargo. La elección presidencial de 2000 , una de las más reñidas en la historia estadounidense, se resolvió mediante una decisión de Corte Suprema de EE.UU. - George W. Bush , hijo de George HW Bush, se convirtió en presidente.

El 11 de septiembre 2001 , al-Qaeda terroristas atacaron el World Trade Center en Nueva York y el Pentágono , cerca de Washington, DC, matando a cerca de tres mil personas. In response, the Bush administration launched the global War on Terror , invading Afghanistan and removing the Taliban government and al-Qaeda training camps. Taliban insurgents continue to fight a guerrilla war . In 2002, the Bush administration began to press for regime change in Iraq on controversial grounds . [ 73 ]

Forces led by the US invaded Iraq in 2003, ousting Saddam Hussein . In 2005, Hurricane Katrina caused severe destruction along much of the Gulf Coast , devastating New Orleans . In 2008, amid a global economic recession , the first African American president, Barack Obama , was elected. Major health care and financial system reforms were enacted two years later. In 2011, a raid by Navy SEALs in Pakistan killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden . The Iraq War officially ended with the pullout of the remaining US troops from the country in December 2011. In October 2012, Hurricane Sandy wrought severe destruction upon the shorelines of the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States.

Geography, climate, and ecology

Composite satellite image of the contiguous United States

The land area of the contiguous United States is 2,959,064 square miles (7,663,941 km 2 ). Alaska, separated from the contiguous United States by Canada, is the largest state at 663,268 square miles (1,717,856 km 2 ). Hawaii, occupying an archipelago in the central Pacific , southwest of North America, is 10,931 square miles (28,311 km 2 ) in area. [ 74 ]

The United States is the world's third or fourth largest nation by total area (land and water), ranking behind Russia and Canada and just above or below China . The ranking varies depending on how two territories disputed by China and India are counted and how the total size of the United States is measured: calculations range from 3,676,486 square miles (9,522,055 km 2 ) [ 75 ] to 3,717,813 square miles (9,629,091 km 2 ) [ 76 ] to 3,794,101 square miles (9,826,676 km 2 ). [ 1 ] Measured by only land area, the United States is third in size behind Russia and China, just ahead of Canada. [ 77 ]

The coastal plain of the Atlantic seaboard gives way further inland to deciduous forests and the rolling hills of the Piedmont . The Appalachian Mountains divide the eastern seaboard from the Great Lakes and the grasslands of the Midwest . The MississippiMissouri River , the world's fourth longest river system , runs mainly north–south through the heart of the country. The flat, fertile prairie of the Great Plains stretches to the west, interrupted by a highland region in the southeast.

Bald Eagle , the national bird of the United States since 1782

The Rocky Mountains , at the western edge of the Great Plains, extend north to south across the country, reaching altitudes higher than 14,000 feet (4,300 m) in Colorado . Farther west are the rocky Great Basin and deserts such as the Chihuahua and Mojave . The Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain ranges run close to the Pacific coast , both ranges reaching altitudes higher than 14,000 feet.

The lowest and highest points in the continental United States are in the state of California , and only about 80 miles apart. At 20,320 feet (6,194 m), Alaska's Mount McKinley is the tallest peak in the country and in North America. Active volcanoes are common throughout Alaska's Alexander and Aleutian Islands , and Hawaii consists of volcanic islands. The supervolcano underlying Yellowstone National Park in the Rockies is the continent's largest volcanic feature. [ 78 ]

The United States, with its large size and geographic variety, includes most climate types. To the east of the 100th meridian , the climate ranges from humid continental in the north to humid subtropical in the south. The southern tip of Florida is tropical, as is Hawaii. The Great Plains west of the 100th meridian are semi-arid. Much of the Western mountains are alpine . The climate is arid in the Great Basin, desert in the Southwest, Mediterranean in coastal California , and oceanic in coastal Oregon and Washington and southern Alaska. Most of Alaska is subarctic or polar. Extreme weather is not uncommon—the states bordering the Gulf of Mexico are prone to hurricanes , and most of the world's tornadoes occur within the country, mainly in the Midwest's Tornado Alley . [ 79 ]

The US ecology is considered " megadiverse ": about 17,000 species of vascular plants occur in the contiguous United States and Alaska, and over 1,800 species of flowering plants are found in Hawaii, few of which occur on the mainland. [ 80 ] The United States is home to more than 400 mammal, 750 bird, and 500 reptile and amphibian species. [ 81 ] About 91,000 insect species have been described. [ 82 ]

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 protects threatened and endangered species and their habitats, which are monitored by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service . There are fifty-eight national parks and hundreds of other federally managed parks, forests, and wilderness areas. [ 83 ] Altogether, the government owns 28.8% of the country's land area. [ 84 ] Most of this is protected , though some is leased for oil and gas drilling, mining, logging, or cattle ranching; 2.4% is used for military purposes. [ 84 ]

Demografía

Población

Largest ancestry groups by county, 2000
Race/Ethnicity
(as given by the 2010 Census) [ 85 ]
By race:
Blanco 72.4%
Black American 12.6%
Asiático 4,8%
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.9%
Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander 0,2%
Otro 6,2%
Multiracial (2 or more) 2,9%
By ethnicity: [ 86 ]
Hispanic/Latino (of any race) 16.3%
Non- Hispanic/Latino (of any race) 83.7%

The US Census Bureau estimates the country's population now to be 315,544,000, [ 2 ] including an estimated 11.2 million illegal aliens . [ 87 ] The US population almost quadrupled during the 20th century, from about 76 million in 1900. [ 88 ] The third most populous nation in the world, after China and India , the United States is the only major industrialized nation in which large population increases are projected. [ 89 ]

With a birth rate of 13 per 1,000, 35% below the world average, its population growth rate is positive at 0.9%, significantly higher than those of many developed nations. [ 90 ] In fiscal year 2011, over one million immigrants (most of whom entered through family reunification ) were granted legal residence . [ 91 ] Mexico has been the leading source of new residents for over two decades; since 1998, China, India, and the Philippines have been in the top four sending countries every year. [ 92 ] [ 93 ] 9 million Americans identify as lesbian , gay , bisexual or transgender , making up four percent of the population. [ 94 ] A 2010 survey found that seven percent of men and eight percent of women identified as gay, lesbian or bisexual. [ 95 ]

The United States has a very diverse population —thirty-one ancestry groups have more than one million members. [ 96 ] White Americans are the largest racial group ; German Americans , Irish Americans , and English Americans constitute three of the country's four largest ancestry groups. [ 96 ] Black Americans are the nation's largest racial minority and third largest ancestry group. [ 96 ] Asian Americans are the country's second largest racial minority; the two largest Asian American ethnic groups are Chinese Americans and Filipino Americans . [ 96 ]

In 2010, the US population included an estimated 5.2 million people with some American Indian or Alaska Native ancestry (2.9 million exclusively of such ancestry) and 1.2 million with some native Hawaiian or Pacific island ancestry (0.5 million exclusively). [ 97 ] The census counted more than 19 million people of "Some Other Race" who were "unable to identify with any" of its five official race categories in 2010. [ 97 ]

The population growth of Hispanic and Latino Americans (the terms are officially interchangeable) is a major demographic trend . The 50.5 million Americans of Hispanic descent [ 97 ] are identified as sharing a distinct " ethnicity " by the Census Bureau; 64% of Hispanic Americans are of Mexican descent . [ 98 ] Between 2000 and 2010, the country's Hispanic population increased 43% while the non-Hispanic population rose just 4.9%. [ 85 ] Much of this growth is from immigration; as of 2007, 12.6% of the US population was foreign-born, with 54% of that figure born in Latin America . [ 99 ]

Fertility is also a factor; as of 2010 the average Hispanic (of any race) woman gave birth to 2.35 children in her lifetime, compared to 1.97 for non-Hispanic black women and 1.79 for non-Hispanic white women (both below the replacement rate of 2.1). [ 100 ] Minorities (as defined by the Census Bureau as all those beside non-Hispanic, non-multiracial whites) constituted 36.3% of the population in 2010, [ 101 ] and over 50% of children under age one, [ 102 ] and are projected to constitute the majority by 2042. [ 103 ] This contradicts the report by the National Vital Statistics Reports, based on the US census data, which concludes that, 54% (2,162,406 out of 3,999,386 in 2010) of births were non-Hispanic white. [ 100 ]

About 82% of Americans live in urban areas (including suburbs); [ 1 ] about half of those reside in cities with populations over 50,000. [ 104 ] In 2008, 273 incorporated places had populations over 100,000, nine cities had more than one million residents, and four global cities had over two million ( New York City , Los Angeles , Chicago , and Houston ). [ 105 ]

There are fifty-two metropolitan areas with populations greater than one million. [ 106 ] Of the fifty fastest-growing metro areas, forty-seven are in the West or South. [ 107 ] The metro areas of Dallas , Houston, Atlanta , and Phoenix all grew by more than a million people between 2000 and 2008. [ 106 ]

Leading population centers
Posición Core city (cities) Metro area population Metropolitan Statistical Area Region [ 108 ]
New York City
New York City

Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles

Chicago
Chicago
1 New York City 19,015,900 New York–New Jersey–Connecticut–Pennsylvania, NY–NJ–CT–PA MSA Northeast
2 Los Ángeles 12,944,801 Los Angeles–Long Beach–Santa Ana, CA MSA Oeste
3 Chicago 9,504,753 Chicago–Joliet–Naperville, IL–IN–WI MSA Midwest
4 Dallas–Fort Worth 6,526,548 Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington, TX MSA Sur
5 Houston 6,086,538 Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown, TX MSA Sur
6 Filadelfia 5,992,414 Philadelphia–Camden–Wilmington, PA–NJ–DE–MD MSA Northeast
7 Washington, DC 5,703,948 Washington, DC–VA–MD–WV MSA Sur
8 Miami 5,670,125 Miami–Fort Lauderdale–Pompano Beach, FL MSA Sur
9 Atlanta 5,359,205 Atlanta–Sandy Springs–Marietta, GA MSA Sur
10 Boston 4,591,112 Boston–Cambridge–Quincy, MA–NH MSA Northeast
11 San Francisco 4,391,037 San Francisco–Oakland–Fremont, CA MSA Oeste
12 Riverside-San Bernardino 4,304,997 Riverside–San Bernandino–Ontario, CA MSA Oeste
13 Detroit 4,285,832 Detroit–Warren–Livonia, MI MSA Midwest
14 Fénix 4,263,236 Phoenix–Mesa–Glendale, AZ MSA Oeste
15 Seattle 3,500,026 Seattle–Tacoma–Bellevue, WA MSA Oeste
16 Minneapolis–St. Paul 3,318,486 Minneapolis–St. Paul–Bloomington, MN–WI MSA Midwest
17 San Diego 3,140,069 San Diego–Carlsbad–San Marcos, CA MSA Oeste
18 Tampa–St. Petersburgo 2,824,724 Tampa–St. Petersburg–Clearwater, FL MSA Sudeste
19 St. Louis 2,817,355 St. Louis–St. Charles–Farmington, MO–IL MSA Midwest
20 Baltimore 2,729,110 Baltimore–Towson, MD MSA Northeast
based upon 2011 population estimates from the US Census Bureau [ 109 ]


Idioma

Languages (2010) [ 110 ]
English ( only ) 229.7 million
Spanish , incl. Creole 37.0 million
Chino 2.8 million
French , incl. Creole 2.1 million
Tagalog 1.6 million
Vietnamita 1.4 million
Coreano 1.1 million
Alemán 1.1 million

English ( American English ) is the de facto national language . Although there is no official language at the federal level, some laws—such as US naturalization requirements —standardize English. In 2010, about 230 million, or 80% of the population aged five years and older, spoke only English at home. Spanish , spoken by 12% of the population at home, is the second most common language and the most widely taught second language. [ 110 ] [ 111 ] Some Americans advocate making English the country's official language, as it is in at least twenty-eight states. [ 6 ] Both Hawaiian and English are official languages in Hawaii by state law. [ 112 ]

While neither has an official language, New Mexico has laws providing for the use of both English and Spanish, as Louisiana does for English and French. [ 113 ] Other states, such as California , mandate the publication of Spanish versions of certain government documents including court forms. [ 114 ] Many jurisdictions with large numbers of non-English speakers produce government materials, especially voting information, in the most commonly spoken languages in those jurisdictions.

Several insular territories grant official recognition to their native languages, along with English: Samoan and Chamorro are recognized by American Samoa and Guam, respectively; Carolinian and Chamorro are recognized by the Northern Mariana Islands; Spanish is an official language of Puerto Rico and is more widely spoken than English there.

Religión

A pie chart of religious groups in the US (2007)

The United States is officially a secular nation ; the First Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion and forbids the establishment of any religious governance . In a 2002 study, 59% of Americans said that religion played a "very important role in their lives", a far higher figure than that of any other wealthy nation. [ 115 ] According to a 2007 survey, 78.4% of adults identified themselves as Christian , [ 116 ] down from 86.4% in 1990. [ 117 ]

Protestant denominations accounted for 51.3%, while Roman Catholicism , at 23.9%, was the largest individual denomination. [ 116 ] The total reporting non-Christian religions in 2007 was 4.7%, up from 3.3% in 1990. [ 117 ] Other religions include Judaism (1.7%), Buddhism (0.7%), Islam (0.6%), Hinduism (0.4%), and Unitarian Universalism (0.3%). [ 116 ] The survey also reported that 16.1% of Americans described themselves as agnostic , atheist , or simply having no religion , up from 8.2% in 1990. [ 116 ] [ 117 ]

There are also Baha'i , Wiccan , Druid , Jain , Native American , humanist and deist communities. [ 118 ] Doubt about the existence of a god or gods is growing rapidly among Americans under 30. [ 119 ] Polls show that overall American confidence in organized religion is declining, [ 120 ] and that younger Americans in particular are becoming increasingly irreligious. [ 121 ]

Family structure

In 2007, 58% of Americans age 18 and over were married, 6% were widowed, 10% were divorced, and 25% had never been married. [ 122 ] Women now work mostly outside the home and receive a majority of bachelor's degrees . [ 123 ]

The US teenage pregnancy rate, 79.8 per 1,000 women, is the highest among OECD nations. [ 124 ] Abortion policy was left to the states until the Supreme Court legalized the practice in 1973 . The issue remains highly controversial, with public opinion closely divided for many years. Many states ban public funding of the procedure and restrict late-term abortions, require parental notification for minors, and mandate a waiting period. While the abortion rate is falling, the abortion ratio of 241 per 1,000 live births and abortion rate of 15 per 1,000 women aged 15–44 remain higher than those of most Western nations. [ 125 ]

Same-sex marriage is a contentious issue. Some states permit civil unions or domestic partnerships in lieu of marriage. Since 2003, several states have legalized gay marriage as the result of judicial or legislative action. Meanwhile, the federal government and a majority of states define marriage as between a man and a woman and/or explicitly prohibit same-sex marriage. Public opinion on the issue has shifted from general opposition in the 1990s to a statistical deadlock, to a majority in support . [ 126 ]

Political divisions

The United States is a federal union of fifty states. The original thirteen states were the successors of the thirteen colonies that rebelled against British rule. Early in the country's history, three new states were organized on territory separated from the claims of the existing states: Kentucky from Virginia ; Tennessee from North Carolina ; and Maine from Massachusetts . Most of the other states have been carved from territories obtained through war or purchase by the US government. One set of exceptions includes Vermont , Texas , and Hawaii : each was an independent republic before joining the union. During the American Civil War , West Virginia broke away from Virginia. The most recent state—Hawaii—achieved statehood on August 21, 1959. [ 127 ] The states do not have the right to unilaterally secede from the union.

The states compose the vast bulk of the US land mass; the two other areas considered integral parts of the country are the District of Columbia, the federal district where the capital, Washington, is located; and Palmyra Atoll , an uninhabited but incorporated territory in the Pacific Ocean. The United States also possesses five major overseas territories: Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands in the Caribbean; and American Samoa , Guam , and the Northern Mariana Islands in the Pacific. [ 128 ] Those born in the major territories (except for American Samoa) possess US citizenship . [ 129 ] American citizens residing in the territories have many of the same rights and responsibilities as citizens residing in the states; however, they are generally exempt from federal income tax, may not vote for president, and have only nonvoting representation in the US Congress . [ 130 ]

The United States also observes tribal sovereignty of the Native Nations. Though reservations are within state borders, the reservation is a sovereign. While the United States recognizes this sovereignty, other countries may not. [ 131 ]

AlabamaAlaskaArizonaArkansasCaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareFloridaGeorgiaHawaiiIdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontanaNebraskaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOhioOklahomaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth DakotaTennesseeTexasUtahVermontVirginiaWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyomingDelawareMarylandNew HampshireNew JerseyMassachusettsConnecticutDistrict of ColumbiaWest VirginiaVermontRhode IslandMap of USA with state names 2.svg
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Government and politics

US Capitol seats the Congress :
the Senate , left; the House , right
The White House used by the US President
Supreme Court and offices for nine Justices
Political system of the United States

The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation . It is a constitutional republic and representative democracy , "in which majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by law ". [ 132 ] The government is regulated by a system of checks and balances defined by the US Constitution, which serves as the country's supreme legal document. [ 133 ]

In the American federalist system , citizens are usually subject to three levels of government : federal, state, and local. The local government 's duties are commonly split between county and municipal governments . In almost all cases, executive and legislative officials are elected by a plurality vote of citizens by district. There is no proportional representation at the federal level, and it is very rare at lower levels.

The federal government is composed of three branches:

The House of Representatives has 435 voting members, each representing a congressional district for a two-year term. House seats are apportioned among the states by population every tenth year. As of the 2000 census , seven states have the minimum of one representative, while California, the most populous state, has fifty-three. [ 137 ]

The Senate has 100 members with each state having two senators, elected at-large to six-year terms; one third of Senate seats are up for election every other year. The president serves a four-year term and may be elected to the office no more than twice . The president is not elected by direct vote , but by an indirect electoral college system in which the determining votes are apportioned to the states and the District of Columbia . [ 138 ] The Supreme Court, led by the Chief Justice of the United States , has nine members, who serve for life. [ 139 ]

The state governments are structured in roughly similar fashion; Nebraska uniquely has a unicameral legislature. [ 140 ] The governor (chief executive) of each state is directly elected. Some state judges and cabinet officers are appointed by the governors of the respective states, while others are elected by popular vote.

The original text of the Constitution establishes the structure and responsibilities of the federal government and its relationship with the individual states. Article One protects the right to the "great writ" of habeas corpus , and Article Three guarantees the right to a jury trial in all criminal cases. Amendments to the Constitution require the approval of three-fourths of the states. The Constitution has been amended twenty-seven times; [ 141 ] the first ten amendments, which make up the Bill of Rights , and the Fourteenth Amendment form the central basis of Americans' individual rights. All laws and governmental procedures are subject to judicial review and any law ruled in violation of the Constitution is voided. The principle of judicial review, not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution, was declared by the Supreme Court in Marbury v. Madison (1803). [ 142 ]

Parties and ideology

Current president Barack Obama taking the presidential oath from Chief Justice John Roberts , January 20, 2009

The United States has operated under a two-party system for most of its history. [ 143 ] For elective offices at most levels, state-administered primary elections choose the major party nominees for subsequent general elections . Since the general election of 1856 , the major parties have been the Democratic Party , founded in 1824 , and the Republican Party , founded in 1854 . Since the Civil War, only one third-party presidential candidate—former president Theodore Roosevelt , running as a Progressive in 1912 —has won as much as 20% of the popular vote. The third-largest political party is the Libertarian Party .

Within American political culture , the Republican Party is considered center-right or conservative and the Democratic Party is considered center-left or liberal . [ 144 ] The states of the Northeast and West Coast and some of the Great Lakes states, known as " blue states ", are relatively liberal. The " red states " of the South and parts of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains are relatively conservative.

The winner of the 2008 presidential election and the 2012 presidential election , Democrat Barack Obama , is the 44th US president ; although, he is the 43rd person sworn into office, as Grover Cleveland served two non-consecutive terms and is counted chronologically as both the 22nd and 24th president.

The 2010 midterm elections saw the Republican Party take control of the House and make gains in the Senate , where the Democrats retain the majority. In the 112th United States Congress , the Senate consists of 51 Democrats, two independents who caucus with the Democrats, and 47 Republicans; the House consists of 242 Republicans and 192 Democrats—one seat is vacant. There are 29 Republican and 20 Democratic state governors , as well as one independent. [ 145 ]

Since the founding of the United States until 2000s, the country's governance has been primarily dominated by White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASPs). However, the situation has changed recently and of the top 17 positions (four national candidates of the two major party in the 2012 US presidential election , four leaders in 112th United States Congress , and nine Supreme Court Justices ) there is only one WASP. [ 146 ] [ 147 ] [ 148 ]

Foreign relations and military

British Foreign Secretary William Hague and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton , May 2010

The United States employs considerable efforts to establish foreign relations and strengthen the American military. It is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council , and New York City hosts the United Nations Headquarters . It is a member of the G8 , [ 149 ] G20 , and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development . Almost all countries have embassies in Washington, DC, and many have consulates around the country. Likewise, nearly all nations host American diplomatic missions . However, Cuba , Iran , North Korea , Bhutan , and the Republic of China (Taiwan) do not have formal diplomatic relations with the United States (although the US still supplies Taiwan with military equipment).

The United States has a " special relationship " with the United Kingdom [ 150 ] and strong ties with Canada , [ 151 ] Australia , [ 152 ] New Zealand , [ 153 ] the Philippines , [ 154 ] Japan , [ 155 ] South Korea , [ 156 ] and Israel [ 157 ] and several European countries such as France and Germany . It works closely with fellow NATO members on military and security issues and with its neighbors through the Organization of American States and free trade agreements such as the trilateral North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico . In 2008, the United States spent a net $25.4 billion on official development assistance , the most in the world. As a share of America's large gross national income (GNI), however, the US contribution of 0.18% ranked last among twenty-two donor states. By contrast, private overseas giving by Americans is relatively generous. [ 158 ]

The president holds the title of commander-in-chief of the nation's armed forces and appoints its leaders, the secretary of defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff . The United States Department of Defense administers the armed forces, including the Army , Navy , Marine Corps , and Air Force . The Coast Guard is run by the Department of Homeland Security in peacetime and the Department of the Navy in time of war. In 2008, the armed forces had 1.4 million personnel on active duty. The Reserves and National Guard brought the total number of troops to 2.3 million. The Department of Defense also employed about 700,000 civilians, not including contractors. [ 159 ]

Military service is voluntary, though conscription may occur in wartime through the Selective Service System . [ 160 ] American forces can be rapidly deployed by the Air Force's large fleet of transport aircraft, the Navy's eleven active aircraft carriers, and Marine Expeditionary Units at sea with the Navy's Atlantic and Pacific fleets . The military operates 865 bases and facilities abroad, [ 161 ] and maintains deployments greater than 100 active duty personnel in 25 foreign countries. [ 162 ] The extent of this global military presence has prompted some scholars to describe the United States as maintaining an "empire of bases". [ 163 ]

Total US military spending in 2011, more than $700 billion, was 41% of global military spending and equal to the next fourteen largest national military expenditures combined. At 4.7% of GDP, the rate was the second-highest among the top fifteen military spenders, after Saudi Arabia . [ 164 ] US defense spending as a percentage of GDP ranks 23rd globally as of 2012 according to the CIA. [ 165 ] Defense's share of US spending has generally declined in recent decades, from Cold War peaks of 14.2% of GDP in 1953 and 69.5% of federal outlays in 1954 to 4.7% of GDP and 18.8% of federal outlays in 2011. [ 166 ] The proposed base Department of Defense budget for 2012, $553 billion, is a 4.2% increase over 2011; an additional $118 billion is proposed for the military campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan. [ 167 ] The last American troops serving in Iraq departed in December 2011; [ 168 ] 4,484 servicemen were killed during the Iraq War . [ 169 ] Approximately 90,000 US troops were serving in Afghanistan as of April 2012; [ 170 ] as of April 4, 1,924 had been killed during the War in Afghanistan . [ 171 ]

Economy

Economic indicators
Unemployment 7.8% (September 2012) [ 172 ]
Crecimiento del PIB 1.3% (2Q 2012) , 1.7% (2011) [ 173 ]
CPI inflation 1.7% (May 2011 – May 2012) [ 174 ]
Poverty 15.1% (2010) [ 175 ]
La deuda pública $15.78 trillion (June 25, 2012) [176]
External debt $15.41 trillion (September 28, 2012) [ 177 ]
Household net worth $58.5 trillion (4Q 2011) [ 178 ]

The United States has a capitalist mixed economy , which is fueled by abundant natural resources , a well-developed infrastructure, and high productivity. [ 179 ] According to the International Monetary Fund , the US GDP of $15.1 trillion constitutes 22% of the gross world product at market exchange rates and over 19% of the gross world product at purchasing power parity (PPP). [ 3 ] Though larger than any other nation's, its national GDP was about 5% smaller at PPP in 2011 than the European Union 's, whose population is around 62% higher. [ 180 ] The country ranks ninth in the world in nominal GDP per capita and sixth in GDP per capita at PPP . [ 3 ] The US dollar is the world's primary reserve currency . [ 181 ]

The United States is the largest importer of goods and second largest exporter , though exports per capita are relatively low. In 2010, the total US trade deficit was $635 billion. [ 182 ] Canada, China, Mexico, Japan, and Germany are its top trading partners. [ 183 ] In 2010, oil was the largest import commodity, while transportation equipment was the country's largest export. [ 182 ] China is the largest foreign holder of US public debt. [ 184 ]

The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street , the world's largest stock exchange per total market capitalization of its listed companies. [ 185 ]

In 2009, the private sector was estimated to constitute 86.4% of the economy, with federal government activity accounting for 4.3% and state and local government activity (including federal transfers) the remaining 9.3%. [ 186 ] While its economy has reached a postindustrial level of development and its service sector constitutes 67.8% of GDP, the United States remains an industrial power. [ 187 ] The leading business field by gross business receipts is wholesale and retail trade; by net income it is manufacturing. [ 188 ]

Chemical products are the leading manufacturing field. [ 189 ] The United States is the third largest producer of oil in the world, as well as its largest importer. [ 190 ] It is the world's number one producer of electrical and nuclear energy, as well as liquid natural gas, sulfur, phosphates, and salt. While agriculture accounts for just under 1% of GDP, [ 187 ] the United States is the world's top producer of corn [ 191 ] and soybeans. [ 192 ] Coca-Cola and McDonald's are the two most recognized brands in the world. [ 193 ]

In August 2010, the American labor force consisted of 154.1 million people. With 21.2 million people, government is the leading field of employment. The largest private employment sector is health care and social assistance, with 16.4 million people. About 12% of workers are unionized , compared to 30% in Western Europe. [ 194 ] The World Bank ranks the United States first in the ease of hiring and firing workers. [ 195 ]

The 2008-2012 global recession affected the United States quite badly. For example, persistent high unemployment remains , along with low consumer confidence , the continuing decline in home values and increase in foreclosures and personal bankruptcies , an escalating federal debt crisis , inflation , and rising petroleum and food prices . In fact, a 2011 poll found that more than half of all Americans think the US is still in recession or even depression , despite official data that shows a historically modest recovery. [ 196 ] In 2009, the United States had the third highest labor productivity per person in the world, behind Luxembourg and Norway. It was fourth in productivity per hour, behind those two countries and the Netherlands. [ 197 ] Compared to Europe, US property and corporate income tax rates are generally higher, while labor and, particularly, consumption tax rates are lower. [ 198 ]

In 2013, the United States ranks equal 16th in the best-country-to-be-born-in list. [ 199 ]

Income and human development

According to the United States Census Bureau , the pretax median household income in 2010 was $49,445. The median ranged from $64,308 among Asian American households to $32,068 among African American households. [ 175 ] Using purchasing power parity exchange rates, the overall median is similar to the most affluent cluster of developed nations . As of 2007, Americans had the second highest median equivalised disposable household income among OECD nations, behind only Luxembourg, and the highest average disposable income and employee earnings. [ 200 ] [ 201 ] After declining sharply during the middle of the 20th century, poverty rates have plateaued since the early 1970s, with 11–15% of Americans below the poverty line every year, and 58.5% spending at least one year in poverty between the ages of 25 and 75. [ 202 ] [ 203 ] In 2010, 46.2 million Americans lived in poverty, a figure that rose for the fourth year in a row. [ 175 ]

A middle-class suburban housing development in San Jose, California

The US welfare state is one of the least extensive in the developed world, reducing both relative poverty and absolute poverty by considerably less than the mean for rich nations, [ 204 ] [ 205 ] though combined private and public social expenditures per capita are relatively high. [ 206 ] While the American welfare state effectively reduces poverty among the elderly, [ 207 ] it provides relatively little assistance to the young. [ 208 ] A 2007 UNICEF study of children's well-being in twenty-one industrialized nations ranked the United States next to last. [ 209 ]

Between 1947 and 1979, real median income rose by over 80% for all classes, with the incomes of poor Americans rising faster than those of the rich. [ 210 ] However, income gains since then have been slower, less widely shared, and accompanied by increased economic insecurity. [ 210 ] [ 211 ] Median household income has increased for all classes since 1980, [ 212 ] largely owing to more dual-earner households, the closing of the gender pay gap , and longer work hours, but the growth has been strongly tilted toward the very top. [ 204 ] [ 210 ] [ 213 ]

Consequently, the share of income of the top 1%—21.8% of total reported income in 2005—has more than doubled since 1980, [ 214 ] leaving the United States with the greatest income inequality among developed nations. [ 204 ] [ 215 ] The United States has a progressive tax system which equates to higher income earners paying a larger percentage of their income in taxes. [ 216 ] The top 1% pays 27.6% of all federal taxes, while the top 10% pays 54.7%. [ 217 ]

Wealth, like income and taxes, is highly concentrated: The richest 10% of the adult population possesses 69.8% of the country's household wealth, the second-highest share among developed nations. [ 218 ] The top 1% possesses 33.4% of net wealth. [ 219 ] In 2011 the United Nations Development Programme ranked the United States 23rd among 139 countries on its inequality-adjusted human development index (IHDI), nineteen places lower than in the standard HDI . [ 220 ]

Infrastructure

Science and technology

Neil Armstrong was the first person to walk on the Moon

The United States has been a leader in scientific research and technological innovation since the late 19th century. In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell was awarded the first US patent for the telephone . Thomas Edison 's laboratory developed the phonograph , the first long-lasting light bulb , and the first viable movie camera . [ 221 ] Nikola Tesla pioneered alternating current , the AC motor , and radio. In the early 20th century, the automobile companies of Ransom E. Olds and Henry Ford popularized the assembly line . The Wright brothers , in 1903, made the first sustained and controlled heavier-than-air powered flight . [ 222 ]

The rise of Nazism in the 1930s led many European scientists, including Albert Einstein , Enrico Fermi , and John von Neumann , to immigrate to the United States. During World War II, the Manhattan Project developed nuclear weapons, ushering in the Atomic Age . The Space Race produced rapid advances in rocketry, materials science , and computers. IBM , Apple Computer , and Microsoft refined and popularized the personal computer .

The United States largely developed the ARPANET and its successor, the Internet . Today, 64% of research and development funding comes from the private sector. [ 223 ] The United States leads the world in scientific research papers and impact factor . [ 224 ] As of April 2010, 77% of American households owned at least one computer , and 68% had broadband Internet service. [ 225 ] 85% of Americans also own a mobile phone as of 2011. [ 226 ] The country is the primary developer and grower of genetically modified food , representing half of the world's biotech crops. [ 227 ]

Transporte

The Interstate Highway System , which extends 46,876 miles (75,440 km) [ 228 ]

Personal transportation is dominated by automobiles, which operate on a network of 13 million roads, [ 229 ] including one of the world's longest highway systems . [ 230 ] The world's second largest automobile market, [ 231 ] the United States has the highest rate of per-capita vehicle ownership in the world, with 765 vehicles per 1,000 Americans. [ 232 ] About 40% of personal vehicles are vans, SUVs , or light trucks. [ 233 ] The average American adult (accounting for all drivers and nondrivers) spends 55 minutes driving every day, traveling 29 miles (47 km). [ 234 ]

Mass transit accounts for 9% of total US work trips. [ 235 ] [ 236 ] While transport of goods by rail is extensive, relatively few people use rail to travel, [ 237 ] though ridership on Amtrak , the national intercity passenger rail system, grew by almost 37% between 2000 and 2010. [ 238 ] Also, Light rail development has increased in recent years. [ 239 ] Bicycle usage for work commutes is minimal. [ 240 ]

The civil airline industry is entirely privately owned and has been largely deregulated since 1978 , while most major airports are publicly owned. The three largest airlines in the world by passengers carried are US-based; Delta Air Lines is number one. [ 241 ] Of the world's thirty busiest passenger airports, sixteen are in the United States, including the busiest, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport . [ 242 ]

Energy

The United States energy market is 29,000 terawatt hours per year. Energy consumption per capita is 7.8 tons of oil equivalent per year, the 10th highest rate in the world. In 2005, 40% of this energy came from petroleum, 23% from coal, and 22% from natural gas. The remainder was supplied by nuclear power and renewable energy sources. [ 243 ] The United States is the world's largest consumer of petroleum. [ 244 ] For decades, nuclear power has played a limited role relative to many other developed countries, in part due to public perception in the wake of a 1979 accident . In 2007, several applications for new nuclear plants were filed. [ 245 ] The United States has 27% of global coal reserves. [ 246 ]

Educación

Some 80% of US college students attend public universities such as the University of Virginia , founded by Thomas Jefferson [ 247 ]

American public education is operated by state and local governments, regulated by the United States Department of Education through restrictions on federal grants. In most states, children are required to attend school from the age of six or seven (generally, kindergarten or first grade ) until they turn eighteen (generally bringing them through twelfth grade , the end of high school ); some states allow students to leave school at sixteen or seventeen. [ 248 ] About 12% of children are enrolled in parochial or nonsectarian private schools . Just over 2% of children are homeschooled . [ 249 ]

The United States has many competitive private and public institutions of higher education . According to prominent international rankings, 13 or 15 American colleges and universities are ranked among the top 20 in the world. [ 250 ] [ 251 ] There are also local community colleges with generally more open admission policies, shorter academic programs, and lower tuition. Of Americans twenty-five and older, 84.6% graduated from high school, 52.6% attended some college, 27.2% earned a bachelor's degree , and 9.6% earned graduate degrees. [ 252 ] The basic literacy rate is approximately 99%. [ 1 ] [ 253 ] The United Nations assigns the United States an Education Index of 0.97, tying it for 12th in the world. [ 254 ]

Salud

The Texas Medical Center in Houston , the world's largest medical center [ 255 ]

The United States life expectancy of 78.4 years at birth ranks it 50th among 221 nations. [ 256 ] Increasing obesity in the United States and health improvements elsewhere have contributed to lowering the country's rank in life expectancy from 1987, when it was 11th in the world. [ 257 ] Obesity rates in the United States are among the highest in the world . [ 258 ] Approximately one-third of the adult population is obese and an additional third is overweight; [ 259 ] the obesity rate, the highest in the industrialized world, has more than doubled in the last quarter-century. [ 260 ] Obesity-related type 2 diabetes is considered epidemic by health care professionals. [ 261 ] The infant mortality rate of 6.06 per thousand places the United States 176th out of 222 countries. [ 262 ]

The US is a global leader in medical innovation. America solely developed or contributed significantly to 9 of the top 10 most important medical innovations since 1975 as ranked by a 2001 poll of physicians, while the EU and Switzerland together contributed to five. Since 1966 Americans have received more Nobel Prizes in Medicine than the rest of the world combined. From 1989 to 2002 four times more money was invested in private biotechnology companies in America than in Europe. [ 263 ] [ 264 ]

The US health-care system far outspends any other nation's, measured in both per capita spending and percentage of GDP. [ 265 ] Health-care coverage in the United States is a combination of public and private efforts, and is not universal as in all other developed countries. In 2004, private insurance paid for 36% of personal health expenditures, private out-of-pocket payments covered 15%, and federal, state, and local governments paid for 44%. [ 266 ]

In 2005, 46.6 million Americans, 15.9% of the population, were uninsured, 5.4 million more than in 2001. The main cause of this rise is the drop in the number of Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance. [ 267 ] The subject of uninsured and underinsured Americans is a major political issue. [ 268 ] [ 269 ] In 2006, Massachusetts became the first state to mandate universal health insurance. [ 270 ] Federal legislation passed in early 2010 would ostensibly create a near-universal health insurance system around the country by 2014, though the bill and its ultimate impact are issues of controversy. [ 271 ] [ 272 ]

Crime and law enforcement

Law enforcement in the US is maintained primarily by local police departments. The New York City Police Department (NYPD) is the largest in the country. [ 273 ]

Law enforcement in the United States is primarily the responsibility of local police and sheriff 's departments, with state police providing broader services. Federal agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the US Marshals Service have specialized duties. [ 274 ] At the federal level and in almost every state, jurisprudence operates on a common law system.

State courts conduct most criminal trials; federal courts handle certain designated crimes as well as certain appeals from the state criminal courts. Federal law prohibits a variety of drugs, although states sometimes pass laws in conflict with federal regulations. The smoking age is generally 18, and the drinking age is generally 21.

Among developed nations, the United States has above-average levels of violent crime and particularly high levels of gun violence and homicide. [ 275 ] There were 4.7 murders per 100,000 persons in 2011, 14.5% fewer than in 2000 (5.5), and 19.0% fewer since a recent peak of 5.8 in 2006. [ 276 ] [ 277 ] Gun ownership rights are the subject of contentious political debate .

The United States has the highest documented incarceration rate [ 278 ] and total prison population [ 279 ] in the world. At the start of 2008, more than 2.3 million people were incarcerated, more than one in every 100 adults. [ 280 ] The current rate is about seven times the 1980 figure, [ 281 ] and over three times the figure in Poland, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) country with the next highest rate. [ 282 ] African American males are jailed at about six times the rate of white males and three times the rate of Hispanic males. [ 278 ] The country's high rate of incarceration is largely due to sentencing and drug policies . [ 278 ] [ 283 ]

Capital punishment is sanctioned in the United States for certain federal and military crimes, and used in thirty-three states. [ 284 ] No executions took place from 1967 to 1977, owing in part to a US Supreme Court ruling striking down arbitrary imposition of the death penalty. In 1976, that Court ruled that, under appropriate circumstances, capital punishment may constitutionally be imposed; since the decision there have been more than 1,300 executions, a majority of these taking place in three states: Texas, Virginia, and Oklahoma. [ 285 ] Four state legislatures in the modern era have abolished the death penalty, though two of those laws (in New Mexico and Connecticut) were not retroactive. Additionally, state courts in Massachusetts and New York struck down death penalty statutes and their legislatures took no action in response. In 2010, the country had the fifth highest number of executions in the world, following China, Iran , North Korea , and Yemen . [ 286 ]

Cultura

The Statue of Liberty in New York City is a symbol of both the US and ideals of freedom, democracy, and opportunity. [ 287 ]

The United States is a multicultural nation, home to a wide variety of ethnic groups, traditions, and values. [ 7 ] [ 288 ] Aside from the now small Native American and Native Hawaiian populations, nearly all Americans or their ancestors immigrated within the past five centuries. [ 289 ] Mainstream American culture is a Western culture largely derived from the traditions of European immigrants with influences from many other sources, such as traditions brought by slaves from Africa . [ 7 ] [ 290 ] More recent immigration from Asia and especially Latin America has added to a cultural mix that has been described as both a homogenizing melting pot , and a heterogeneous salad bowl in which immigrants and their descendants retain distinctive cultural characteristics. [ 7 ]

American culture is considered the most individualistic in the world. [ 291 ] The American Dream , or the perception that Americans enjoy high social mobility , plays a key role in attracting immigrants. [ 292 ] While the mainstream culture holds that the United States is a classless society , [ 293 ] scholars identify significant differences between the country's social classes, affecting socialization , language, and values. [ 294 ]

The American middle and professional class has initiated many contemporary social trends such as modern feminism , environmentalism , and multiculturalism. [ 295 ] Americans' self-images, social viewpoints, and cultural expectations are associated with their occupations to an unusually close degree. [ 296 ] While Americans tend greatly to value socioeconomic achievement, being ordinary or average is generally seen as a positive attribute. [ 297 ]

Popular media

The world's first commercial motion picture exhibition was given in New York City in 1894, using Thomas Edison 's Kinetoscope . The next year saw the first commercial screening of a projected film, also in New York, and the United States was in the forefront of sound film 's development in the following decades. Since the early 20th century, the US film industry has largely been based in and around Hollywood , California.

Director DW Griffith was central to the development of film grammar and Orson Welles 's Citizen Kane (1941) is frequently cited as the greatest film of all time. [ 298 ] American screen actors like John Wayne and Marilyn Monroe have become iconic figures, while producer/entrepreneur Walt Disney was a leader in both animated film and movie merchandising . Hollywood is also one of the leaders in motion picture production. [ 299 ]

Americans are the heaviest television viewers in the world, [ 300 ] and the average viewing time continues to rise, reaching five hours a day in 2006. [ 301 ] The four major broadcast television networks are all commercial entities. Americans listen to radio programming, also largely commercialized, on average just over two-and-a-half hours a day. [ 302 ] Aside from web portals and search engines , the most popular websites are Facebook , YouTube , Wikipedia , Blogger , eBay , and Craigslist . [ 303 ]

The rhythmic and lyrical styles of African-American music have deeply influenced American music at large, distinguishing it from European traditions. Elements from folk idioms such as the blues and what is now known as old-time music were adopted and transformed into popular genres with global audiences. Jazz was developed by innovators such as Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington early in the 20th century. Country music developed in the 1920s, and rhythm and blues in the 1940s. [ 304 ]

Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry were among the mid-1950s pioneers of rock and roll . In the 1960s, Bob Dylan emerged from the folk revival to become one of America's most celebrated songwriters and James Brown led the development of funk . More recent American creations include hip hop and house music . American pop stars such as Presley, Michael Jackson , and Madonna have become global celebrities. [ 304 ]

Literature, philosophy, and the arts

In the 18th and early 19th centuries, American art and literature took most of its cues from Europe. Writers such as Nathaniel Hawthorne , Edgar Allan Poe , and Henry David Thoreau established a distinctive American literary voice by the middle of the 19th century. Mark Twain and poet Walt Whitman were major figures in the century's second half; Emily Dickinson , virtually unknown during her lifetime, is now recognized as an essential American poet. [ 305 ] A work seen as capturing fundamental aspects of the national experience and character—such as Herman Melville 's Moby-Dick (1851), Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), and F. Scott Fitzgerald 's The Great Gatsby (1925)—may be dubbed the " Great American Novel ". [ 306 ]

Mark Twain , famous American author and humourist .

Eleven US citizens have won the Nobel Prize in Literature , most recently Toni Morrison in 1993. William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway are often named among the most influential writers of the 20th century. [ 307 ] Popular literary genres such as the Western and hardboiled crime fiction developed in the United States. The Beat Generation writers opened up new literary approaches, as have postmodernist authors such as John Barth , Thomas Pynchon , and Don DeLillo .

The transcendentalists , led by Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson , established the first major American philosophical movement . After the Civil War, Charles Sanders Peirce and then William James and John Dewey were leaders in the development of pragmatism . In the 20th century, the work of WVO Quine and Richard Rorty , and later Noam Chomsky , brought analytic philosophy to the fore of American philosophical academia. John Rawls and Robert Nozick led a revival of political philosophy .

In the visual arts, the Hudson River School was a mid-19th-century movement in the tradition of European naturalism . The realist paintings of Thomas Eakins are now widely celebrated. The 1913 Armory Show in New York City, an exhibition of European modernist art , shocked the public and transformed the US art scene. [ 308 ] Georgia O'Keeffe , Marsden Hartley , and others experimented with new, individualistic styles. Major artistic movements such as the abstract expressionism of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning and the pop art of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein developed largely in the United States. The tide of modernism and then postmodernism has brought fame to American architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright , Philip Johnson , and Frank Gehry .

One of the first major promoters of American theater was impresario PT Barnum , who began operating a lower Manhattan entertainment complex in 1841. The team of Harrigan and Hart produced a series of popular musical comedies in New York starting in the late 1870s. In the 20th century, the modern musical form emerged on Broadway ; the songs of musical theater composers such as Irving Berlin , Cole Porter , and Stephen Sondheim have become pop standards . Playwright Eugene O'Neill won the Nobel literature prize in 1936; other acclaimed US dramatists include multiple Pulitzer Prize winners Tennessee Williams , Edward Albee , and August Wilson .

Though little known at the time, Charles Ives 's work of the 1910s established him as the first major US composer in the classical tradition, while experimentalists such as Henry Cowell and John Cage created a distinctive American approach to classical composition. Aaron Copland and George Gershwin developed a new synthesis of popular and classical music. Choreographers Isadora Duncan and Martha Graham helped create modern dance , while George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins were leaders in 20th-century ballet. Americans have long been important in the modern artistic medium of photography , with major photographers including Alfred Stieglitz , Edward Steichen , and Ansel Adams . The newspaper comic strip and the comic book are both US innovations. Superman , the quintessential comic book superhero , has become an American icon. [ 309 ]

Food

Mainstream American cuisine is similar to that in other Western countries. Wheat is the primary cereal grain. Traditional American cuisine uses indigenous ingredients, such as turkey, venison, potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, squash, and maple syrup, which were consumed by Native Americans and early European settlers.

Slow-cooked pork and beef barbecue, crab cakes, potato chips, and chocolate chip cookies are distinctively American foods. Soul food , developed by African slaves, is popular around the South and among many African Americans elsewhere. Syncretic cuisines such as Louisiana creole , Cajun , and Tex-Mex are regionally important.

Characteristic dishes such as apple pie, fried chicken, pizza, hamburgers, and hot dogs derive from the recipes of various immigrants. French fries, Mexican dishes such as burritos and tacos, and pasta dishes freely adapted from Italian sources are widely consumed. [ 310 ] Americans generally prefer coffee to tea. Marketing by US industries is largely responsible for making orange juice and milk ubiquitous breakfast beverages. [ 311 ]

The American fast food industry, the world's largest, pioneered the drive-through format in the 1930s. Fast food consumption has sparked health concerns. During the 1980s and 1990s, Americans' caloric intake rose 24%; [ 310 ] frequent dining at fast food outlets is associated with what public health officials call the American " obesity epidemic ". [ 312 ] Highly sweetened soft drinks are widely popular, and sugared beverages account for nine percent of American caloric intake. [ 313 ]

Sports

Swimmer Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time

Baseball has been regarded as the national sport since the late 19th century, while American football is now by several measures the most popular spectator sport. [ 314 ] Basketball and ice hockey are the country's next two leading professional team sports. These four major sports, when played professionally, each occupy a season at different, but overlapping, times of the year. College football and basketball attract large audiences. Boxing and horse racing were once the most watched individual sports , [ 315 ] but they have been eclipsed by golf and auto racing , particularly NASCAR . While soccer is much less popular in the United States than many other nations (where it is called football), it is played widely at the youth and amateur levels. Tennis and many outdoor sports are popular as well.

While most major US sports have evolved out of European practices, basketball , volleyball , skateboarding , snowboarding , and cheerleading are American inventions, which have become popular in other countries. Lacrosse and surfing arose from Native American and Native Hawaiian activities that predate Western contact. Eight Olympic Games have taken place in the United States. The United States has won 2,301 medals at the Summer Olympic Games , more than any other country, [ 316 ] and 253 in the Winter Olympic Games , the second most by 2006. [ 317 ]

Measurement systems

Although the United States authorized the metric system in 1866 and was one of the original 17 signatory nations to the Metre Convention of 1875, the nation primarily relies on the United States customary units , very similar to the British imperial units system and also derived from the historical English units system. Lengths and distances are stated mostly in inches , feet and miles , weight in pounds and tons of 2,000 pounds , and temperatures in degrees Fahrenheit . Most units are the same as the imperial units of the same name, but measurements of capacity differ; the US gallon and US pint are about 83% of their Imperial equivalent, while the US fluid ounce is about 4% larger than the imperial fl.oz. According to the CIA Factbook, the United States is one of three countries that have not adopted the International System of Units (SI) metric system as their official system of weights and measures. However, SI predominates in science, medicine, technology, and international commerce. [ 318 ]

Véase también

Referencias

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