Chinese Stereotypes That Many Americans Believe

What on earth do Americans think of China and Chinese people? (Image: Kotaku.com)
What on earth do Americans think of China and Chinese people? (Image: Kotaku.com)

I was often asked: What on earth do Americans think of China and Chinese people? The following list contains some things for your reference. Whether they are correct or not, however, is for you to decide for yourself.

Chinese people tend to run restaurants

In the United States, you can always find a Chinese restaurant in almost every city, even in a small town, or far away in remote cities. It is sometimes joked that there might be a Chinese restaurant flying in a spaceship in outer space.

Chinese people like to, and will, eat anything

The perception is that most Chinese people are very strange, and they eat almost everything. Americans are curious about Chinese cuisine. Chinese eat chicken claws, chicken heads, animal viscera, and internal organs, etc. What’s more horrifying to Americans is that Chinese people even eat dog meat. In an American worldview, people believe dogs are pets, and they are regarded as part of the family unit. To Americans, eating dog meat is tantamount to eating a member of one’s family.

In the United States, you can always find a Chinese restaurant in almost every city, even in a small town, or far away in remote cities. (Image: Elvert Barnes via flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)

In the United States, you can always find a Chinese restaurant in almost every city, even in a small town, or far away in remote cities. (Image: Elvert Barnes via flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)

Most Americans don’t understand Chinese women

Americans don’t understand why many Chinese women always walk hand in hand when they go shopping, and they even sometimes sleep in the same bedroom. In the West, that is often perceived as lesbian behavior.

The Chinese language is hard to learn

Americans will often joke that when referring to something difficult to deal with, they may say it’s like learning Chinese.

All Chinese are good at table tennis

One time, I played table tennis with a foreigner from the West; he won the game and told everybody about the news. He said things like: “I can beat Mrs. Kao! I am greater than a Chinese at table tennis! My table tennis skill is higher than every Chinese person.” My fellow citizens, I apologize to everyone. I tarnished our national image of having excellent table tennis players. I am determined to fix this, so from now on, I will practice playing table tennis as much as I can!

All Chinese are good at table tennis. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

All Chinese are good at table tennis. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Most Americans believe that Chinese are good at martial arts

Because Bruce Lee and Jet Li are quite famous in America, you can find lots of Chinese martial art academies across the world, including America. My friends also often ask me if I am good at martial arts.

Martial virtue directly relates to morality, and is the key element to Chinese martial arts. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Because Bruce Lee and Jet Li are quite famous in America, you can find lots of Chinese martial art academies across the world, including America. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Chinese are diligent, hardworking, and very frugal

Americans find that Chinese living in American are diligent, and tend to be hardworking and frugal. They always seem to have cash in their wallets.

Chinese are patriotic, and are proud to be Chinese, regardless of where they live

Even if they have become a naturalized citizen of their respective country, they will still support China and remain patriotic.

Chinese like to live in groups, and tend to be gregarious

No matter where in the United States you go, you can always find a Chinese signboard, Chinese commercial signs, Chinese supermarkets, and Chinese restaurants in Chinatowns, or other places in the downtown areas.

It is difficult to understand Chinese women’s opinions

Americans always have difficulty understanding a Chinese woman’s opinion. In fact, it may mainly be due to language barriers and introverted personalities. Maybe they don’t speak English well and are not good at conversation, or maybe they always feel shy. So even if they have good ideas, they still tend not to speak up directly to point them out.

The marriage market is very much a seller's market with some girls seeing more than 30 men in a single day. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Americans always have difficulty understanding a Chinese woman’s opinion. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Chinese women have more traditional ideas and are more concentrated on loyalty to their families

In many Americans’ minds, Chinese women are kindhearted, beautiful, and good at housekeeping. Additionally, they are rather traditional, as well as conservative, and concentrate on family life.

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