A term we like to use both in a derogatory and flattering manner, being an Eastern European comes with its perks and its downsides. Before we dive into those, let’s define where exactly is Eastern Europe.
There are no geographical borders to Eastern Europe but the term generally includes the region that is occupied by Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, North Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro and the European part of Russia. Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania can also come in the equation because they historically were a part of the Eastern Bloc.
What do you think about the below Eastern European stereotypes?
Eastern Europeans are not “basically the same”
Ok, let’s make something clear, there are lots of differences between Eastern Europeans. Each come from diverse backgrounds and cultures, they speak different languages, have different alphabets, music and beliefs. We have strong national identities and centuries of history that we are very proud of.
All Eastern Europeans speak one language – Russian
Even though some Eastern Europe countries speak Slavic languages, Russian is not one of them (except in Russia). Let me clarify that, at the peak of the Soviet Union era, countries that were a part of the USSR were obliged to study Russian. After 1991 that was no longer the case, which makes finding someone under 30 who speaks Russian extremely rare.
It’s always winter
On the contrary, there are 4 distinct seasons that require clearing your wardrobe 4 times a year… Summer heat can reach 40c. Winters can be so severe that digging your car from a snowball after a whole night of snowing should be considered a hobby.
Eastern Europeans have an off the top alcohol tolerance
Vodka, Rakia, Ouzo, Ţuică, Slivolvica, home-made wine and many more can be found in the Eastern European household, however, that does not mean that all of us take a morning shot to start off the day. We believe that alcohol is consumed as a complement to food, and not as a proof of national identity.
All Eastern Europeans are rude
Politeness is a point of view. For an Eastern European “can you please pass the salt” and “give me the salt” is basically the same thing. What it matters is only the tone of voice and your mannerisms.
Eastern Europeans have a backwards mentality
Excessive masculinity, obedient housewives and excessive racial and gender discrimination might be a thing in some parts of Eastern Europe, but nowadays that goes hand in hand with female Olympic medalists, growing LGBTQ+ support communities, scientific discoveries, and Nobel peace prize laureates.
All Eastern Europe women are gorgeous
Not a stereotype, that’s just true!
Prejudice aside, in reality, grooming and self-care are an essential part of the mentality of Eastern European women. Having your clothes washed and ironed, your nails polished, and hair combed and styled is a number one requirement for going out of your house, even if it is just to do the bins.
Here are some extra for your entertainment, thanks to Reddit:
- Croatians are Casanovas
- Montenegrins are lazy
- Bosnians are dumb
- Albanians are bakers and/or ice-cream sellers
- Romanians are thieves
- Bulgarians are proud of their alphabet
- Poland are super religious & steal all the jobs of English people
- North Macedonians don’t have their own culture