awareness, self-determination

beliefs, strength

independence, freedom

independence, selfish

independence, sovereignty, pride

intelligence, ideas

liberal, integrity

loneliness, stubbornness

motivation, isolation, pioneering


necessary, enlightening

open-mindedness, independence


school of thought, weird

self, modern

society, reality, self

success, drive

understatement, values

uniqueness, autonomy

United States, personality, freedom

argent, vitesse

égoïsme, américain

égoïsme, argent

égoïsme, vision à court terme, moderne

égoïste, défaut, méchant

égoisme, nécessaire, modernité

égoisme, requin

décadence, antipathie, perte

défaut, développé

démocratie, capitalisme, majorité

mal moderne, français, à combattre

méchanceté, égoïsme

Polytechnique, égoïsme, fermé

racisme, égoïsme , mépris

se battre

solitude, opportunisme


survie, force, honnêteté


Je ne suis pas vraiment surpris par la divergence de point de vu sur ce
thème. Nous, français, percevons l'individualisme comme
particulièrement négatif! Nous l'associons essentiellement à de
l'égoïsme et à l'isolement pour le qualifier de mal nécessaire dans le
monde moderne.

Outre atlantique, votre vision semble nettement plus positive
(de façon générale vous êtes beaucoup plus positivistes et optimistes
que nous français). Toujours associé à la modernité, l'individualisme
c'est l'indépendance, la liberté, l'intégrité, la clef du succès...
c'est pour ainsi dire les Etats Unis!

Encore une fois je cherche à comprendre d'où vous vient cette
façon d'aborder la vie. Nos professeurs de philosophie, ici en France,
semblent être unanimes pour qualifier l'individualisme de mal moderne!!
Qu'en pensez vous?

Hi Hatim,

Yeah, we did give really different responses! Individualism is
something that I am very proud of. As a country, I think we pride
ourselves on the fact that we can be individualistic and independent.
There is a more of a we can do it by ourself thinking. That doesn't
mean we don't work in teams. We do work hard together, but we believe
that there is something sarcred about one person.

With individualism, we are able to believe everyone is unique
and special. You are not just an ordinary citizen, student, parent,
employee, but you are an INDVIDUAL who has the power to acheive goals
and success. Because you are an individual you are able to be granted
equality, freedom, and liberty.

In essence, I think that it is individualism gets negative
connations abroad because the world thinks that Americans tend to be
very opinionated, direct, and self righteous. But when you deeply
ponder the word individualism, you will find that it is the meaning of
that word that gives life to a person. You are not just a number in a


So tell us what you think of American individualism. Do you seen in the Americans who you have met?

It's a point worth noticing that the negative connotation on individualism
is attached with America. I do wonder though if the American factor is
left out, whether individualism would have more positive association.

I'm curious on what is the drive of a person to reach success
in France (in contrast to one's self motivation, whether it is teamwork
or other source of inspiration?).

that word with so many shades... so to reiterate, yes...individualism
is something that americans value...not becuase they are particularly
egotistical or arrogant or ignorant of others...(though some may seem
to be that way...aka bush >__>;;) We enjoy being recognized as
individuals for our achievements, ambition, motivation, strive to
succeed, strive to help...basically anything that defines us. At the
same time, we realize that nothing can be possible without teamwork and
mutual support and growth. I believe one part of the american mentality
is: I may be able to help you and guide you, but in the end, it is your
decision to make and live with. Perhaps you will regret the mistake you
have made and sometimes you won't, but the bottom line is that you
decided for yourself, what direction you were going to take yourself
in. There is a vey clear cut concept of self and others. I wonder
whether the french views of self and others are more blurred. There
also seems to be a greater direct involvement of the government in
french people's lives. during elections, is there a high voting
turnout? I am asking this because for a while, the united states had
relatively low turnouts for elections, especially among young people.

About individualism, You can basically catagorize the individual positively
or negatively. I you are looking for positive or negative qualities,
you will find them. The same attributes that make the individual highly
successful and strong also make him stubborn and difficult to live

About the national analogy, no, the United States does not
degrade the concept of individual. The fear of rebellion is much older
than the United States.

I do not deny that self-centeredness is a major problem for Americans.

Are there differences in the attitudes of french young people, or do most students agree with the professors?