DT 006: National traits
Before you listen: Please, note the highlighted words below. Their pronunciation is different in Kannada English. Try to pay attention when you listen to them, because most Indian people will pronounce them in this way. Remember that 1) in Kannada English, all -ed endings are clearly pronounced 2) ma'am, mam, sir are used in almost every sentence 3) many speakers add Kannada words into their English 4) all th sounds become t or d. history, customs, however, one, love, Italy, vodka, negative, must be, argue, characteristic.
National traits are the physical and psychological characteristics, history and customs that all people in one nation share. However, it's very difficult to point out one trait which is unique for one nation and no other. For example, a Brazilian national trait is said to be the love of carnivals and dancing. But carnivals originally come from Italy, and Italians love dancing, too!
Actually, many people are against such generalization and argue that stereotypes are often mistaken for “national traits.” Is drinking vodka a Russian trait or a stereotype? You see it as a joke in many Russian and foreign movies and it's the largest vodka market in the world, but is that what makes it a nation?
According to many foreigners, a national trait of the Japanese is the lack of expression of negative emotions and reactions, replacing them with blank expressions. It's rather unique, therefore it must be a national trait, they reason.
Let’s discuss stereotypes and national traits and find out the difference!
Do you agree with the example about Japan?
Do you think drinking vodka is a trait?
What national traits do you think Japan has?
What national traits do you think other countries have?
What's a stereotype?
What do you want people to know about Japan?
psychological, characteristic, customs, unique, generalization, stereotype, argue, lack of, affinity for, to be inclined to, extrovert, to value, expressive, sociable, patriotic