American Culture

What do the Chinese think about Americans?

My students, colleagues, and I have been forming an impression of the Chinese during our trip to China these past ten-plus days. But what do the Chinese think of Americans?

We put that question to one of our guest speakers, C.J. Wang, who has spent a lot of time with Americans because he’s worked as a translator (his English is outstanding). He is now a small-business owner manufacturing various types of axles for American companies, so he spends a fair amount of time traveling to the U.S. for business. I mention this because C.J. understands Americans as well as any Chinese person can; he knows our quirks and idiosyncrasies. He’s sympathetic.

“American culture is well-received here,” he told us. “Chinese people, especially young people, like to wear Nikes. They like to wear jeans. They like to drink Coke. American culture is very popular.”

Americans themselves? C.J. said Chinese think Americans…

…are very generous.
…are very open-minded.
…are hard-working.
…are very noisy.
…have a weight problem.
…are spoiled. They have too much good stuff and don’t always appreciate it.

In international affairs, Americans are nosey. They are pokey. They enjoy being the world’s policeman.

“Americans like to have fun,” C.J. said. “They like to play hard. They work hard and play hard.”

5 replies »

  1. They see us in a lot sharper focus than we see them. Though, after this series, I feel like I’ve got a much better understanding of China and the Chinese.

  2. What I loved when I was there was the how most of the MBA students felt the need to shout when someone didn’t understand them. I remember when I was at a restaurant one of my cohorts reminded one of the students (who was practically shouting her order) that “they don’t understand you, they’re not deaf”.

  3. I have talked to some chinese trade students in college. they love American and wish to stay here. They are disappointed when their Visas expire after college and must leave. I have met some great people from Egypt, Thailand, Palestine, China, and India. I am impressed by them. They enjoy and like our culture. I have made some good friends 🙂

  4. Glad to learn that the Chinese don’t think negatively of us! America is Great and it means well ! We just have to remember to keep God in it and we will continue to be Blessed!

  5. Well these are myths, america does not like China or Chinese people, I’m Chinese and I’m having alot of issues here so, I do not see what fantasy this story is.