I think that New York is not the cultural centre of America, but the business and administrative centre of American culture.
The centers of US and China In my opinion: Washington DC, like Beijing is the political center New York, like Hong Kong is the financial center Los Angeles, like Shanghai is the cultural center San Francisco, Like Lhasa is the spiritual center
I think Boston would object to being missed out on. Not sure what center it would claim, but it’s certainly got… something. Horrible Traffic Center, perhaps, though LA would certainly give it a run for its money. On the other hand… a road system designed by cow paths is pretty hard to beat.
Not sure I would describe Lhasa as the anything centre of China, given that most Chinese are not Buddhist and take their spiritual direction from other places. On the other hand, I don’t think of San Francisco as a particularly spiritual place either; just very expensive, highly fashionable, and rather aggressively Left.
Really, both the U.S. and China are so big and contain such variety that any city claiming to be the X centre of either country (apart from the capital) is probably fooling itself.
If I had to choose a US spiritual center it might be someplace like Utah, where religion is such a big part of so many people’s lives (although it’s not my religion), or someplace like Sedona, where the air is positively saturated with every sort of spirituality.
And culture is such a relative thing. Is the music scene in Memphis more culturally important than the music scenes in Seattle or Austin? Is MOMA more important than the Smithsonian?
This country is so vast and so diverse, that we have LOTS of “centers”.
I should also mention that I believe those who live in NYC, and DC, and L.A. all may think they are the center of the universe and the arbitors of all that is good and holy, but those of us in flyover country never think too much about THEM. Mostly we’re just doing our own thing and trying to keep other folks’ hands out of our pockets too much. And we have art and business and books and everything! It’s not all just bacon sundaes and beer out here, ya know!
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