Foreigners Read Popular Guide to Understand American Behavior

Expatriates, international college students and foreign exchange students turn to What’s Up America? when they want answers to questions most Americans are afraid to discuss.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) September 14, 2006 –- When the excitement of being in a new country is over, and cultural bewilderment creeps in, international visitors read What’s Up America?, a Foreigner’s Guide to Understanding Americans.

“What other book has illustrations and statistics to show common American attitudes and behavior? This book is truly unique,” says Livia Tommasini, says an Italian post doctoral student who now works at the University of California –Riverside as a biotech researcher.

>From University of New Orleans to Calvin College in Michigan to Riverside Community College in California, international students are studying the book to better understand the hearts and minds of Americans. Dozens of colleges across the country are using What’s Up America? in courses geared to helping international students adjust to life in the U.S.

Foreign student exchange organizations like AFS Intercultural Programs USA have recently taken notice. As one of the nation’s largest exchange programs, AFS has started using the useful book in their orientation programs.

“What’s Up America? presents the ‘why’ behind behaviors, values and traditions which many of us may not realize are unique to the U.S,” says Robin Weber, who is the Manager of Quality and Orientation for AFS Intercultural Programs USA.

Intercultural trainers and relocation companies are giving their clients the book as a tool to explain the confusing aspects of American behavior to international employees.

“It answers a lot of questions I’ve had during my first year and a half in the U.S., for instance, why it is so hard to make a true friend with a friendly stranger here, what the American education system looks like, and why Americans like big trucks instead of fuel efficient cars,” says Walt Lee, the Chinese director of Futurewei Technologies.

Unique in its format, readers get a visual picture of the American people in illustrations, pie charts and informational graphics. The cultural guide is full of examples, statistics and historical background, and is organized into 20 chapters with each chapter tackling a controversial topics such as “Eat Now, Pay Later,” “Crazy for Rules,” and “Flag Fever.”

The author Diane Asitimbay has talked about the peculiar eating habits of her fellow Americans on the “FOX & Friends” Morning Show. Now, Asitimbay has a monthly newsletter, The Culture Chronicles and a blog, and plans to offer interactive web chats on U.S. cultural topics at

She currently teaches international students at University of California – San Diego, and has had more than twenty years of experience of helping international visitors adjust to the United States.

What’s Up America? A Foreigner’s Guide to Understanding Americans (ISBN 0-9759276-0-4) is available for $14.95 at fine independent bookstores, or by calling Book Clearing House toll free at 1-800-431-1579.

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