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Old 02-10-2014, 11:33 AM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,323,178 times
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There is apparently much truth in the observation, however, it is rapidly changing.

People will naturally act more civil when they get richer and received more education, especially those who are from middle class families which never experienced any lack of necessities. If you really have more experience living in Chinese cities, you will find that the 20/30 something in large cities such as Shanghai and Beijing end to be a lot more polite than those in their 50s.

Back in the 50s-70s, most Chinese are poor. Everything was rationed and you have to fight for everything because of the scacity of products and the large population. It is rapidly changing. More and more chinese grow up without knowing what is like to be hungry, or lack of proper and comfortable shelter. They behave differently.

Koreans back in the 80s were as rude and coarse as the Chinese - they never aplogize after bumping into you and many spit on the streets. But in a matter of 5-10 years, much of it has changed. People almost all of a sudden become polite and pleasant. This is happening in China to. Try take the subway in Shanghai and observe those young professionals.

That being side, you can never expect the Chinese to behave in the American way, expecting the waiter to ask "how are you doing", or random strangers to smile at you. The Chinese are practical people and don't like faking those - what's the point of asking "how are you doing today sir" - "not well, I have cancer, what can you do??" These are meaningless.

In the service sector, it is becoming more and more "pleasant" in the American way, because they need to compete for business. Try to go to a good (not necessarily upscale) restaurant in major cities. The service can be exceptional - with a young girl standing by waiting to fill up you tea up every time it is empty. You can't expect that kind of service in any American city. But that's business, not out of genunine kindness.

I wonder if you are bumped by someone on a Manhattan st or subway car, will you get an apology? Probably less likely than in a smaller cities. Chinese cities are mostly very crowed, things like being stepped on or bumped happen frequently, people simply stop thinking it is worth apologizing for.

It is a steoreotype that all Americans obey traffic rules and wait for the green light to cross the streets, while the Chinese don't. Until you visit Manhattan and see all those j-walkers, honking cars etc and realize it is not a country difference, it is how people react to different environment.

 
Old 02-13-2014, 06:51 PM
 
Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA
7,653 posts, read 15,390,227 times
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They do seem to be less polite at take-outs than most other "American"-run establishments, but this might be because of language barriers. However, if you are a regular customer and get to know them, they are as kind as anyone to you.

As for Chinese students, I went to college with a few and regularly had them in classes. The ones I got to know were awesome. One kid taught me how to make ma po tofu and arranged a trip to Winnipeg (when I couldn't drive due to having a seizure) three years after we graduated or even last seen each other. He was also very involved in college clubs, bring blood marrow donation to the school and protesting a group of Tibetan musicians for a week celebrating peace. I don't know how he did it all, and he now is in a neuroscience laboratory in Europe.
 
Old 02-16-2014, 10:14 PM
 
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In China, customers usually shout loudly at waiters/waitresses to have their attention. If customers are not loud enough, they are usually neglected. Mainland Chinese have the habit to talk loudly in many situations.
 
Old 02-16-2014, 11:05 PM
 
665 posts, read 592,462 times
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Botticelli is very correct in his message. To understand why Mainland Chinese act the way they do, you need to understand the history of the people and China in the past. We always compare China and Chinese to developed nations, but one forgets that China was one of the poorest countries 30 years ago. People had very little and you needed to scrap and fight your way to get yours. That mentality still resonates with many middle age and older people. Slightly less so with the younger generation.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 06:00 AM
 
Location: Melbourne, Australia
9,781 posts, read 16,329,236 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeinChina View Post
Botticelli is very correct in his message. To understand why Mainland Chinese act the way they do, you need to understand the history of the people and China in the past. We always compare China and Chinese to developed nations, but one forgets that China was one of the poorest countries 30 years ago. People had very little and you needed to scrap and fight your way to get yours. That mentality still resonates with many middle age and older people. Slightly less so with the younger generation.
That is true. China has advanced immensely in 30-40 years. In the early 1980s I believe China was on par with India.
 
Old 02-21-2014, 02:48 AM
 
Location: In the heights
22,370 posts, read 23,839,391 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeinChina View Post
Botticelli is very correct in his message. To understand why Mainland Chinese act the way they do, you need to understand the history of the people and China in the past. We always compare China and Chinese to developed nations, but one forgets that China was one of the poorest countries 30 years ago. People had very little and you needed to scrap and fight your way to get yours. That mentality still resonates with many middle age and older people. Slightly less so with the younger generation.
That and a lot of "bourgeois" concepts of etiquette and politesse were kind of wiped out in a long fit of paranoia and suspicion.
 
Old 03-07-2014, 11:46 PM
 
Location: NYC
1,876 posts, read 1,715,642 times
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Do chinese lack politeness and courtesy? Nah....

Spoiled Child Slaps & Chokes Mother In Public For Toy – chinaSMACK
 
Old 03-08-2014, 12:42 AM
 
Location: Guangzhou, China
9,792 posts, read 13,408,083 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krichton View Post
Do chinese lack politeness and courtesy? Nah....

Spoiled Child Slaps & Chokes Mother In Public For Toy chinaSMACK
And I've had people shove me out of the way and call me racial or gender expletives on the NY subway before... doesn't mean that Americans lack politeness, decorum, and courtesy.
 
Old 03-10-2014, 03:02 PM
 
Location: NYC
1,876 posts, read 1,715,642 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 415_s2k View Post
And I've had people shove me out of the way and call me racial or gender expletives on the NY subway before... doesn't mean that Americans lack politeness, decorum, and courtesy.
Were any of those people your children?
 
Old 03-12-2014, 05:46 AM
 
Location: Guangzhou, China
9,792 posts, read 13,408,083 times
Reputation: 11315
Quote:
Originally Posted by krichton View Post
Were any of those people your children?
I sure as hell hope not... if so then all I can say is that not only is birth control MUCH less than 99% safe, but it transcends time and space when it fails...!
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