Top 10 Most Ridiculous Japanese Stereotypes
There exist stereotypes for every kind of people and the Japanese are no exception.
As with many misconceptions, some of them are based on some truth that has been exaggerated to the extreme.
So read on and let’s learn something real.
10. All Japanese People Can Speak English Real Good
Did you take a foreign language in high school? How much do you remember of it? Yeah, that’s what I thought.
Sure, Japanese students take many years of English while they are in school.
but from my experience they mainly focus on writing rather than speaking and the only ones who are really good at it are those who really take an interest in the language and study it outside of class.
9. All Japanese People Eat Whales and Dolphins for Breakfast Lunch and Dinner
While Japanese people are much more likely than others to dine on meat from whales and dolphins, it’s probably not as common as you think.
This may be familiar to those of you who have already read Hashi’s post Ever Been So Hungry You Could Eat A Whale.
but like he says, eating whale in Japan is about as common as something eating like alligator or squirrel in the United States. It’s uncommon, but it’s still done.
8. Hibachi Grill Restaurants are Properly Named
Yes, the picture above is a hibachi. Not what you expected? I’m not surprised.
The “hibachi” grills you see in hibachi restaurants are actually “teppanyaki” grills.
Hibachi, or “fire bowls,” are traditional Japanese heating devices consisting of a round, cylindrical, or a box-shaped container, made from or lined with a heatproof material and designed to hold burning charcoal.
7. Japanese People Don’t Like Letting People Into Their Personal Bubble and Are Really Weird About Personal Space and Stuff
For some reason a lot of people view Japanese people as being very anti-touchy-feely and kind of prude.
While this may be somewhat true with person to person relationships and PDA like holding hands and kissing and whatnot, this is most certainly not true with daily commutes and train rides.
Just take a look at the video below. It’s nuts.
6. Japanese People Are Still Sour About WWII and Are All Racist Xenophobes
Really? Come on. In all honesty I’d say that there’s more Americans that are still sour about Pearl Harbor than there are Japanese people sour about Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
A lot of things happened in WWII that are touchy subjects for everyone, but that’s largely in the past for most people.
Most Japanese people today are very interested in Western and American culture and are very welcoming to others.
5. Only Japanese People Can Excel at Traditional Japanese Sports and Things
There are a handful of people (both inside as well as outside Japan) that think only the mighty Yamato people are capable of being good at anything Japanese whether it be the language, sports, or otherwise.
This, however, is grossly untrue. Take sumo for example. What’s more Japanese than sumo?
Well, believe it or not there hasn’t been a Japanese Yokozuna in like ten years (they were either Hawaiian or Mongolian).
4. Japanese People Are Super Polite, Like, All the Time
Have you ever visited Japan and felt like everyone was being ridiculously nice to you, even more than you would have expected?
Have you ever had a foreign exchange student at your school before? Would you be super nice to them? Probably. Japanese people are about as polite as anyone else really.
This is even more true when you hang around Japanese people who think foreigners are cool and want to be nice and hang around them all the time.
3. Japanese People All Drink Only Sake and Can’t Handle their Alcohol
Of course Japanese people drink other kinds of alcohol apart from sake.
Yes, they probably drink more sake than other nations, but probably in the same way French people would be more likely to drink more wine and Germans would be likely to drink more beer.
But Japan loves wine and beer just as much as the next country. Don’t believe me? Beer was responsible for starting a war in Japan. They take it very seriously over there.
2. All Japanese People Eat Sushi All Day Every Day
Yes, sushi comes from Japan. Yes, sushi is awesome and no one would be unhappy eating it each and every single day.
However, Japan has a lot of other foods that are equally as awesome like tempura, gyoza, okonomiyaki, yakisoba, and even bukkake. Some Japanese people don’t even like sushi (the poor souls).
1. All Japanese People Watch Anime and Read Manga (Even in Their Sleep!)
Okay, so kids in Japan watch anime just about as much as kids in the United States watch American stuff like SpongeBob SquarePants or Looney Tunes.
As kids get older, they will be more likely to “graduate” from anime onto manga (reading is hard, after all).
but it’s pretty comparable to how American folks like American comic books (or graphic novels if you prefer).
And just like in America, if somebody ends up being really obsessed with comics they’ll most likely be labeled as a super nerd (or otaku).