Top10 stereotypes in Taiwan about Russians

Written by Lana Sun

1. Russia is a country with an endless winter. We don’t have summer, don’t have sunshine and god know how can we survive in this -30 C

Right, in some cities in Siberia the winter temperature can drop to -30 C. The lowest temperature would be 40-50 C, but it will only last for a few days. Nevertheless, there are also cities like Moscow, where winter temperature varies about -5 to -15 C. Therefore the standard temperature for all country is about -20 to-25 C. Moreover, we have a heater inside each room, so winter in Russia is even warmer than winter in Taiwan.

Furthermore we have four seasons: winter, spring, summer, and autumn. Our summer lasts 3 months and the temperature is various from 20-40 C.

2. We are not scared of cold weather.

The first time I complained that the room is way too cold because of the AC, I received reactions like: “How? You are Russian, you can’t be scared of cold!” Really? I’m Russian, but it doesn’t mean that I’m Elsa from Frozen Heart.

3. Every Russian starts their morning with a cup of vodka. Who needs coffee, if you have vodka to get a fresh mind and go outside for the endless cold?

Do you ever try to drink Russian vodka at 6 am? No, really, I insist, before asking this question, you should try to do it by yourself. We do not drink vodka as a beverage. Otherwise Taiwanese should admit that cockroach is your appetizer, as I heard in Russia.

4. Bears on the street

I live in Russia for 22 years, I travel around my country each summer and I have never seen a bear on a place, which isn’t a zoo.

5. Everyone has guns

Actually, that is a good idea and I can vote for this. But not in this life, guys, not in this life. If you want to have a gun, you should first get a permission from the police and have a license to have gun. It’s quite difficult to get it. Therefore I don’t have a AK-47 inside my bag.

6. Everyone has tanks.

Sure. No problem with traffic.

7. All Russian girls are beautiful and all men are handsome.

This stereotype sounds nice, but let’s be objective – each nation has own it’s own beauty.

8. In addition, we have blonde hair, blue eyes and we have only one type of face.

My friends who are from Russia but don’t look like European – Russia is big country we have hundreds different nations, and some of them looks more like Asian type – they hate questions about where they’re from. Because after they say that they’re from Russia, the answers will be like “Come on!”, “Don’t lie to me”, “No, you’re from Korea”, “How can you be from Russia?” I know one Russian girl in Taiwan who looks exactly like an Asian girl and she always has problems when she goes outside and wants to buy some food. The shopkeeper talks to her in Taiwanese and doesn’t believe that she is foreigner!

9. Russians are at least 180 cm tall.

It’s hard to prove that all Russian aren’t tall when your own height is 182 cm. 😉

10. We use our national doll, Matreshka for praying.

Really? When I heard this sentence from my Taiwanese student who learn Russian, I didn’t know what to say. The teachers in Taiwanese universities say that Russians use the national doll when they want to pray for something. Oh.  Wait. I should go and try!



About the Author:

Lana Sun is a student from Russia who is currently living in Taichung. She models and loves Taiwanese food and culture.