From “eating sushi on a daily basis” to “women falling easily to Western men,” Japanese citizens shared their perspectives on the common stereotypes the outside world has about their culture.
In a video produced by Asian-centric YouTube channel Asian Boss, vlogger Hiroko took to the streets of Tokyo to shed light on whether the stereotypes were accurate and how the Japanese people feel about them.
Asked what type of stereotypes they think people have towards them, some participants in the interview mentioned “cuteness” “passiveness” “being workaholic” and “kindness.” Some also joked about being mistaken for being “all samurai warriors” or “sushi chefs.”
Meanwhile, some also talked about some of the negative perceptions such as women being “easy” to foreigners.
“Japanese people eat sushi every day”
All of the respondents quickly said this assumption is incorrect with at least two of them sharing that they only eat sushi once every two weeks.
“All Japanese girls love kawaii (anything cute)”
Most of the women agreed while the male respondents described which things about girls they think qualify to be kawaii.
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“All Japanese women are subservient and docile”
While some older women admitted that the “view still exists” and that “guys like those kinds of girls,” the majority of the respondents, both men and women, completely deny this. Some of those asked, however, think that such perceptions, even if wrong, can still be taken as a compliment.
“All Japanese people love manga, anime, and cosplay”
Most respondents also denied being obsessive in all of them but admit a certain degree of fascination on at least one.
“All Japanese love kinky sex or watch kinky porn”
Some men quickly denied this, but the women acknowledged that there are Japanese men who prefer younger girls or girls who have child-like features. At least one respondent admitted to watching “tentacle porn.”
“Everyone hides their true feelings at all times”
Most respondents agree to this stereotype explaining that it helps them to get along with other people.
“Everyone is extremely polite at all times”
Some of the respondents denied this and noted the politeness most foreigners see may only be on the surface.
“Japanese people often say things to be polite. But to a foreigner, they think we mean everything and take our words at face value,” a male respondent said.
Hiroko then asked them why many of the stereotypes remain despite being false.
“They think they know Japan but they really don’t,” one respondent answered.
When asked what she wishes foreigners would understand about Japan, one woman replied: “I want foreigners to know that Japanese women are independent, work very hard and strong-minded, we’re not easy. We won’t fall for foreign or Japanese men easily. Not all Japanese women are looking for relationships.”
“I don’t want them to focus on the negative things about Japan. I hope they can discover more good things about Japan,” another one said.