Sunday, 15 September 2013

Stereotypes and prejudice

"Travel teaches toleration"

Benjamin Disraeli

"Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends."
Maya Angelou

"To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries."
Aldous Huxley

 "All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it."
Samuel Johnson

"When overseas you learn more about your own country, than you do the place you're visiting." 
Clint Borgen

"The more I traveled the more I realized that fear makes strangers of people who should be friends."
Shirley MacLaine

Typical Italian and British stereotypes:

The following is a PowerPoint slides show to talk about stereotypes in a simple and funny way with our students.
(from a PowerPoint presentation by Roberta Martino)






And you? Have you ever been victim of prejudice? Tell us something about the typical stereotypes of your country.


  1. Hello,
    my relatives are from Lituania and there they say that Italian are messy and always eat pizza and spaghetti. But they think Italy is beautiful and they like coming on holiday.

  2. Giorgio and Angelica9 October 2013 at 18:15

    We have Albanian origins. Italian people think that Albania is nasty. Instead it is beautiful, they have a lot of popular festivals. Italians also think that all Albanians are shepherds and farmers but they are not.
    Albanians think that Italians are nice and funny but stubborn!
    Giorgio and Angelica ID Losapio

  3. Thank you guys for your comments. It's really interesting to understand how foreingers see Italians!

  4. I've got Tunisian origins. I asked my uncle Bcasshan and he said: Italian always eat pasta, have cats, they think they are beautiful, always drink coffee, all Italians wear glasses,Italian men wear jeans and women wear too small skirts. Italian women also wear necklaces, always have red lipstick and make-up and wear very high shoes. Moreover, all Italian eat ham every day and always drink beer. But the most important thing is that they don't have a national dance. In Tunisia we have got it!
    Naima 1B

  5. I asked my grandfather who is almost 90 and was in the second world war. He met many foreigner soldiers. He said:
    English thought that Italians were hard workers, were very funny and smoked a lot.
    Germans thought we were worms to crush, spies and traitors.
    Americans said we were nice people.
    French and Brasilians said that we were all very similar!
    Andrea 1B

  6. My father worked in Germany and he says that Germans think that we are good workers, cheerful, funny, singers but also dirty and mafiosi!
    Gianni 1B

  7. My sister went to London and said that English eat bad food and always go to the pub. They don't have the "real" pizza. Their pizza is very small and expensive and their coffee is very weak!
    Martina 1B

  8. I asked my mother' s American friend and she said that in America they say that Italians are friendly, chaotic, elegant, funny, unorganized, elegant, vain and superficial. But we have wonderful food and wine!
    I read on a magazine that Russian think that we are slob and we smoke too much.
    My German uncles say that Germans think we are very very poor, mummy's boys, thieves and our poitics look like a soap opera!!
    Some Greek friends say that in Greece they say we are destroyers and mafiosi.
    My friend Flavia says that English think we are lazy, we always eat pizza but we can make beautiful cars!
    Daria 1B

  9. All of you were very good! You asked to your foreign relatives and friends and we learnt a lot of interesting things! Keep on sharing!

  10. My cousins from New York say that Italians are gold-chain waring, mama boys, mafiosi, they speak aloud and gesticulating and they are latin lovers. American women find Italian men attractive, charming, generous and elegant. But mos of all ...Italians don't speak a word of English!!!!
    Carlo IB

  11. My cousin went to London and she asked to a friend:
    Italians are always tanned (and Italian men have got a lot of gel on their hair!); they wear sunglasses; they always eat spaghetti and drink coffee; they gesticulate; they are mafiosi (Americans have a glamourous idea of mafia); they are all footballers; they are latin lovers.
    Teresa IB

  12. Teresa, you're right, sometimes foreign people have a glamourous idea of mafia. Let's think about the "Sopranos" tv series or about many movies that show "mafiosi" as elegant, rich, powerful and charming people. We shouldn't forget that mafia is a very dangerous and despicable thing! In Italy it's a serious problem but not all of us are mafiosi and for sure we are not proud of it!!

  13. Dominic Eliston from Zapp! English11 December 2013 at 18:24

    This is great +ROBERTA MARTINO thanks for sharing it!

  14. I think that prejudices are not right. How can I judge a person just I don't know. Maybe I don't like the way he dress or his look, but those are called ''personal tastes'' and everyone has their own.
    As for my country, Italy, I think there are stereotipes true and false others. For example, it is true that in Italy we eat pasta very often, as it is not true that Italians are all tied to Mafia. A tip for everyone: Italy is divided into regions and before judging it you should visit it from top to bottom because it's really fantastic with its pros and cons.
    Kiss for everyone:)

  15. I and my famiy gave hospitality to a Finnish boy, Pekka. Finnish are very shy! he told us a joke: the difference between a shy Finnish and an outgoing Finnish is that the first, when speaks to you, looks at his shoes, the second looks at yours!!!
    Finnish people think that Italian eat spaghetti and don't speak foreign languages. They are shy, love classical music and sauna (they think it's purifying).
    I hope Pekka enjoyed Italy!