Comic Talk and General Discussion *

National Stereotypes
Ozoneocean at 2:00AM, Feb. 18, 2010
posts: 28,710
joined: 1-2-2004
I sometimes muse on this:
What most characterises certain nationalities (that you've met)? Do they differ a lot from the common idea of how they should be? Do they follow it? Or are all the individuals very individual and don't follow any national stereotype at all?

(stay away from ethic stereotyping or “racial” typing!!!!!! Racial typing pisses me off, a lot)

-I tend to think that regardless of weather or not people follow ways of behaving based on nationality, your mind will make connections and see similarities anyway.

Most Americans I've met in the flesh (most, not all), are amazingly friendly, giving, generous, open, scrupulously polite, and very easy going. But quite loud. -this goes for all ethnicities of American. There's no difference.

Canadians tend to be a little more aloof, but they're even more easy going than Americans. reasonably polite, and generally pretty dreamy. Like Americans, but a lot less intense. Quieter.

Chinese are just plain good. Very hard working, polite, almost institutionally friendly, very self effacing, extremely honest, will always help you out.

Yugoslavs (former)- Very, very gregarious. They're everyone's friend, everyone's brother, sister, father, mother. Be friends with a Yugoslav and you join their family.

Irish people I've met had minds as keen as blades- very smart, very sharp witted, people. Friendly with an edge.

Scotts I've known were angry, quick tempered people, loyal and friendly and very tough.

English- Nice people all round, friendly and shy, with an acerbic wit, but often with a very high self regard, sometimes bordering on arrogant.

French- The French people I've met don't border on arrogant, they cross over on to the other side. Very intelligent and cultured and like you to realise that.

Egyptian- Generous and friendly in massive amounts, very good humoured.

Turkish- Sensuous. Curious. Open.

Ethiopian- Intelligent, cultured, quiet listeners.

German- Warm, loving people. friendly- depending on how “German” they are, initially they can seem a little cold and aloof, almost intimidating.

Dutch- Charmingly, unthinkingly arrogant. But charmingly friendly too.

Scandinavians in general (though I've mostly known Norwegians and Danish), are bluff, honest, and kind hearted. Not crafty or round-about. They say what they mean.
-not in a stupid “straight talking” Sarah Palin or Bush2 way either. Next to Scandinavians, those two look like faking schemers (which they are I suppose)

Indians.Friendly, helpful and love cricket. They like to join in, learn, be a part of the group.

Pakistani- much like Indians really; friendly helpful people who like to join in.

Aussies- we're all boorish dickheads of course. Any Aussie would tell you that. :)

New Zealanders- Like Aussies but nicer.

I hope nobody is offended by that. :(
And of course those impressions can't really define any group of people by ethnicity, they're just impressions I've developed based on the people I've met and my mind has made connections based on what it sees as similar traits in people of the same nationality.

I wonder if anyone has formed similar impressions?
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:36PM
Product Placement at 3:47AM, Feb. 18, 2010
posts: 7,078
joined: 10-18-2007
I hope nobody is offended by that. :(
How could anyone be offended by that? You essentially label almost every nationality as a friendly person. Reading through your list made me picture this image over and over again.

I'm not gonna cover as many nations as oz but here are few that stick out in my mind. So here are few national stereotypes in the eyes of the Icelanders.

To Icelanders, American friendliness tends to look fake and forced, like they actually don't like you at all but are merely putting up a show for appearances sake. I don't doubt that most of the time they're being sincere but I believe that this stigma is a result of a cultural difference. Icelanders tend to be more formal to people they don't know so it feels weird when a complete stranger is being so warm to them. After the war, the American stereotype was compared with the rooster, a loud and fancy looking bird that likes to boss the other animals around the farm and puffs up and becomes downright dangerous when it's angry. That comparison is no longer made today but there are remains of it in old songs like this one song where the Americans are introduced as puffed up yankees who are ready to kill some communists.

Germans have this image of being strict and punctual. If a bus is scheduled to be at the bus stop at 04:32 pm then it sure as hell will be there at 04:32 pm and not a minute sooner or later. They're honest and don't hide from the things they've done. Instead they strive to learn from the past and be better because of it. It's an admirable trait.

French used to have this image of being sensual people but there's this ongoing joke now that they spend so long time with the foreplay because they can't keep up with the Nordic stamina. They also have the reputation among us as world leaders in cuisine and Icelandic food boards are competing to reach that same level in respect (as long as we don't show people our rotten shark and rams testicles we should do nicely). Another ongoing stigma is that if you don't speak their language, then they're more likely to be rude to you. Apart from that we have lots or respect to them because they keep kicking our asses at handball.

Scandinavians have the this label of being our national cousins so they tend to be treated like a distant relative. Despite that we're less likely to like the Danes but that's only because of the history between. They badmouth us as much as we badmouth them. Scandinavians tend to represent the ultimate lifestyle so things like education, life expectancy and crime is constantly compared to Norway and Sweden. If we're doing as well or better then they are, then we're doing something right.

British are often looked upon as elitist who believe they know better then others. When we hear the word posh, we immediately think of the British. They also carry the stigma of being gossipy thanks to their tabloid papers. The class system is still believed to exist in England even if it's not as absolute as it used to be. Because of that it is generally hard for someone born to a poor family to make something out of himself over there. The British public is often thought to be depressed. Now bare in mind that these are not my viewpoints. I'm merely relaying the general opinion of my countrymen towards the British. I myself used to live in London for few years and have seen things that both confirm and disprove many of these claims so they're just as versatile as anyone else. I was kinda saddened by the high number of homeless people living there though.

The old stereotype that the Scots had to suffer was that that they were unbearably cheap and stingy. I grew up hearing ALLOT of jokes about how Scots couldn't bare spending money on anything. That's all gone now though. Today, they're seen as friendly people who have allot in common with us.
Those were my two cents.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 2:52PM
lba at 6:47PM, Feb. 18, 2010
posts: 2,751
joined: 5-29-2007
So far my impressions have been that the Canadians are friendly, not unlike us but tend to be a bit more reserved and respectful so long as you're outside of Toronto or Windsor which are more like the US.

The Japanese are friendly, polite, a bit hard to get a read on because of it. They don't seem to react a lot when you say something stupid or act rudely especially when they know it wasn't intentional. They're generous and forgiving like that, with a tendency to stay quiet rather than get pissed.

Mexicans tend to be friendly, flamboyant and intense. My experience with them is that they do embody a few of the stereotypes of them being hard-working and focused. I've never run into a Mexican person who was the lazy type.

The Scots and Irish are considered hell on wheels here. They're hard drinking, fighting and working but with a lot of class in America. Pretty much everything we prize in our blue collar folks. They still have a reputation as tough sonsabitches from the world wars and their connection to boxing.

The Brits are pleasant and reserved, but a bit lacking in humor at times. Sometimes it comes off as snotty to Americans I know when they just act like they don't think anythings funny, but we love them when they cut loose. I remember someone telling me that he'd hate to be working on something with a British man, but he'd love for them to plan it all out.

The Germans are stiff and a bit kinky in their tastes. When they're not being kinky, they're middle class to a T. Quiet, calm, polite and hard working.

The French are kinky, friendly, fun and sometimes almost too intimate. Hugs and kisses on the cheek tend to catch us off guard. Awesome to hang out with, and they usually take a few cracks about knowing wine pretty decently. Parisians are the ones who gave them the snotty cheese-eating asshole label as far as I can tell.

Americans in my experience are trusting to a fault, and tend to stick out like a sore hand more than just the thumb. Loud, fun and always enjoying things as much as possible. The only way I can account for the weird blend of loudness, trust, xenophobia and friendliness is that Americans have no distinct ethnic background so they just adopted whatever they liked, kind of like a bunch of teenagers. And just like teenagers, they are absolute hell to deal with once you piss them off.

That's been my experience of the people who come to the US. But I think people tend to adopt a bit of our behavior the second they get onto US soil.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:30PM
DAJB at 11:37PM, Feb. 18, 2010
posts: 1,462
joined: 2-23-2007
I used to work for a German company and therefore got to know a lot of different people from Germany. I found that, the more people you know, the less the national stereotypes seem to apply. On the other hand, however, you do start to recognise the regional differences more!

Northern Germany
The people from here came closest to giving the impression of being like the international stereotype of the cold, humourless, rule-bound “Prussian” German. They're not really like that, of course (many of them have an excellent sense of humour!) but, because of their outward manner and different social conventions, it's easy to get that impression when you first meet them.

Southern Germany
In my experience, these people are the complete opposite of every preconception you've ever been led to believe about Germans. The ones I knew were funny, gregarious and had a very Mediterranean disregard for rules and conventions. They will proudly tell you they are not really German at all: they're Bavarian and even have their own king (somewhere!)

Eastern Germany
Like a lot of people from the former Soviet-controlled Eastern bloc, I found the Germans from the former DDR were very well educated, with a high regard for culture and the arts. Quite reserved on first meeting but in a way that was sensitive rather than aloof. Very loyal and with a subtle sense of humour, especially when directed at their former Soviet overlords!
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:04PM
ParkerFarker at 2:04AM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 1,451
joined: 4-29-2009
You know I heard somewhere that our stereotype of the French, rude and arrogant and all that is actually more true of the Spanish than the French. I heard this on two separate independent occasions in fact.

I could say some stuff on the yanks but they seem to be pretty well covered.

Really there's not much I can say on any other country. I am only fifteen.

“We are in the stickiest situation since Sticky the stick insect got stuck on a sticky bun.” - Blackadder
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:39PM
Hawk at 9:14AM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 2,791
joined: 1-2-2006
I expected a lot of negativity going into this thread. But what a pleasant surprise! It's actually quite nice, and even a bit flattering.

Iba, I think you're kind of right about America, it's a relatively young country. They've taken in a lot of cultures and absorbed certain amounts of each into the main culture. I think England is still our biggest influence.

What's interesting is that Canada is about the same age and location, but they've developed into a fairly different (but quite pleasant) stereotype. I wonder if it's the french influence.

Most of my experience with other cultures has to do with Japan. If you pictured the stereotype of kind, polite, and quiet people who are very conformist, you'd be right. I saw only a small percentage of people in my years living there who deviated from that. Goodness, I miss Japanese people. They're changing, though. The youth are gaining a sort of independence streak and are finding ways to stand out and be original. They're a bit louder and more energetic.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
crocty at 9:29AM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 6,677
joined: 8-16-2007
English people: I hate them all.
No, really. They're insufferable. :|
I'm not really around much anymore, but here's my Tumblr, Twitter, and Deviantart. Also if you remember me from back when I was around, I'm sorry.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:53AM
I Am The 1337 Master at 4:29PM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 3,785
joined: 1-16-2009
I don't hate any race but unlike how Ozone sees us, us american's are a little worse.

We are actually quite LOUD yes, but it depends on the state/area you live in whether you'll be nice since our country is so racially and socially divided.

In a rounded sense most of us can be Ozone's version of an Australian, mate, but there a small percent that are average, normal, nice people.

Like ME!!! (ooh, loud, sorry) like me.

and half of this is jokingly said. The other half describes my neighbors and idiots in my school
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:54PM
Walrus at 5:09PM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 1,159
joined: 2-18-2007
Most Americans I've met in the flesh (most, not all), are amazingly friendly, giving, generous, open, scrupulously polite, and very easy going. But quite loud. -this goes for all ethnicities of American. There's no difference.

I want to know where you met these Americans. I'd like to hear from them as well. Yes we're loud but were also fat, obnoxious, greedy, money-wasting, resource-draining, impatient fuck heads.
last edited on July 14, 2011 4:45PM
GracehFaceh at 7:59PM, Feb. 19, 2010
posts: 433
joined: 10-2-2008
Don't know much about other counties personality wise. My family travels more nationally than internationally, with the exception of my dad with his job. East vs. West coast is a pretty big deal here, I'd say. “People in LA will stab you in the back. People in NY will punch you in the face.” I think is the saying, lol. There are definitely pockets of different types of people all over.

The people here on the east coast are more formal and cultured, I guess, since all the big cities are pretty much clustered here. Overly political and class conscious. Preppier, business-like, driven by success. Ruder and a bit rough around the edges, but in a way that we're all accustomed to and essentially understand.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:38PM
Freegurt at 9:44AM, Feb. 20, 2010
posts: 331
joined: 11-24-2007
I want to know where you met these Americans. I'd like to hear from them as well. Yes we're loud but were also fat, obnoxious, greedy, money-wasting, resource-draining, impatient fuck heads.

Yes, well you can say that about just anybody, really. Nobody from anywhere is going to be perfect. Especially a whole entire country.

It's like saying the Japanese are the only ones who fap to tentacle porn. Yeah, there are some Japanese who like that, but there are also English and Americans that like it, too. All in all, it gives the sane ones (of any country or nationality) a bad name.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:31PM

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