America, like other modern nations, is characterized by its diversity and can be seen as a complex and fragmented nation-state. Yet an American culture defined by those beliefs, and behaviors that all Americans do share, irrespective of their other cultural affiliations, does exist. This book presents an innovative approach to the issues and aspects in the study of America's unique culture. The real diversity of America is lost in the practice of categorizing people into social (racial or ethnic) groups and then attributing culture to them. While not an exhaustive treatment of the culture, this volume serves as a point of departure for discussions of American culture in a variety of courses both within and outside the discipline of anthropology. Each chapter is accompanied by suggested readings to enable the student to pursue a more in-depth study of any individual topic.