An ethnic stereotype, national stereotype, or national character is a system of beliefs about typical characteristics of members of a given ethnic group or nationality, their status, society and cultural norms. National stereotypes may be either about their own ethnicity/nationality or about others. Stereotypes about their own nation may aid in maintaining a national identity.
Various anti-national phobias and prejudices operate with ethnic stereotypes.
Ethnic stereotypes are commonly portrayed in ethnic jokes, most of which are usually considered to be offensive in various degrees. Richard M. Steers and Luciara Nardon in their book about global economy use the "You have two cows" joke to illustrate the concept of cultural differences. They write that jokes of this kind:
- Russian company: You have two cows. You drink some vodka and count them again. You have five cows. The Russian Mafia shows up and takes however many cows you have.
- Californian company: You have a million cows. Most of them are illegals.
– are considered funny because they are realistic caricatures of various cultures, and the pervasiveness of such jokes stems from the significant cultural differences. Steers and Nardon also state that others believe that cultural stereotypes in jokes of this kind must be viewed with caution.
- National character studies
- List of ethnic slurs
- List of archetypal names
- Stereotypes of Americans
- Stereotypes of Argentines
- Stereotypes of South Asians
- Stereotypes of Jews
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- Managing In The Global Economy, by Richard M. Steers, Luciara Nardon (2005) ISBN 0-7656-1551-7
- Alí, Maurizio. (2010). Medios de comunicación, asuntos étnicos e intercultura en Colombia. En Revista Razón y Palabra, 74 (nov.2010/ene.2011). México DF: ITESM Campus Estado de México. ISSN 1605-4806.
- Macrae CN, Stangor C, Hewstone M.(eds.) "Stereotypes and stereotyping." Guilford Press, 1996.