Stereotypes about Ukrainians
UKRAINE IS A PART OF RUSSIA Many people do not know about existence of our country at all. Someone looks for it in the map of Africa. We think that it is the main stereotype about Ukraine. People, who associate our country with Russia, think that it is very cold here and everybody wears ear-flapped fur hats. It's not all that. We have frosts but in winter. The temperature does not go below zero at the Southern coast of the Black see.
Ukrainians drink too much alcohol There is a rumor that Ukrainians drink too much alcohol. It is not quite so also. Actually it happens but in a definite population group, mainly in small towns and villages where they have job shortage resulting in low level of life. If to compare alcohol consumption with the other countries (liters per person annually), Ukraine is not in the top position! According to the information of the World Health Organization, Luxemburg and France take the first place as for alcohol consumption (due to the large volume of exports). The level of alcohol consumption in Ukraine is the same as in Italy, which takes the 22nd place.
Ukrainians eat too much lard There is a stereotype that Ukrainians eat too much lard and that lard is almost the main dish on the table of the ordinary Ukrainians! Possibly it was the case some day, as a tradition to eat lard is something like Italians’ obsession with pasta! Ukraine is an agricultural country and some time ago the hog growing was very popular in every family living in the country side. Historically lard breed of hogs were grown and the lard was used in different types: rendered, salted or fried. Today, taking into consideration that the tradition of growing the lard breed of hogs is lost, and that young people prefer to live a healthy life style, eating of lard can’t be considered as a national kind of sport. Not many people do eat the lard – may be elder generation or to honor the tradition you could be offered ground lard with garlic in Ukrainian restaurant with other national dishes...
Ukrainian language is actually dialect of Russian language One more stereotype about Ukraine is the similarity and equality of the languages. Please note that the Ukrainian language has as much common with the Russian language, as English with Dutch (37-38% differences in vocabulary).
A LOT OF BEAUTIFUL WOMEN Foreigners also say that there are a lot of beautiful women here. It is hard for us to agree or not agree with this statement. Make up, beautiful clothes, high heels... They cannot but attract attention. To go to work or to the party or just to go for a walk – make up for most of Ukrainian ladies is a point of honor! The Ukrainian women are not only beautiful but clever, independent, self-sufficient, determined and smart (to give a banquet having an empty fridge – that’s the way they do it!). In many families the last word always belongs to a woman! Many of them are career-minded but they keep the main value – the family and children.
Most important Ukrainian wife's goal is to find a partner abroad Most important Ukrainian wife's goal is to find a partner abroad because of very low level of living in Ukraine and to do everything possible and impossible to leave it forever. It is not true. Ukrainian women are looking for partners among westerns because they already had experience of relationships with Ukrainian men who are not responsible about their families quite often. Many women become desperate after unsuccessful experience with men in Ukraine and try to find their other half even if being with the right one means moving to another continent and adjusting to a new culture and mentality.
Ukrainians are somewhat reserved and indifferent During the times when Ukrainian lands were part of different states, this trait of the national character of the people served as sort of protective mechanism for the retention of their identity. Nowadays, the majority of Ukrainians are good-tempered and open, and get along with people quickly. Sometimes, even too quickly: some may call yesterday's stranger their best friend after the second encounter!Really indifferent? A popular saying in Ukraine, ‘this is not my headache,’ creates this belief. In most cases the external indifference is just unwillingness to interfere in the life of another person. Nevertheless, if they can give a helping hand, Ukrainians never deny assistance.
Ukrainians are superstitious This is true. You will often see a person in Ukraine who refuses to sit down at the table if he or she is the thirteenth person; who looks in the mirror after returning to the house to pick up something that he or she has forgotten; or, who goes out of his way to avoid the street crossed by a black cat.