In the spirit of Horace Miner, this thought-provoking yet accessible collection of articles (primarily written by American anthropologists on American mainstream culture) casts mainstream USA in the role of the "Other".
It address traditional ethnographic categories covered by anthropologists—myth and ritual, economy and power, language and ideology-with theoretically meaty articles, geared toward an undergraduate audience.
The authors, whether or not their subject matter is ephemeral, arrive at enduring conclusions so that the anthology has staying power; even though there are those who would state that the U.S. is too diverse to have any one culture. (It acknowledges diversity; while stressing how something that can reasonably be called “U.S. culture” emerges from and shapes the cultures of our component populations.)
In addition, the collection is headed by a classic short piece, modeled after Horace Miner’s “Body Ritual Among the Nacirema.”