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How do non-American men view American women
March 10, 2006 12:01 PM   Subscribe

In general, how do non-American men view American women? Repressed, promiscuous, intelligent, arrogant, superficial, attractive, aggressive, etc.
posted by notcomputersavvy06 to Society & Culture (56 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Repressed, promiscuous, intelligent, arrogant, superficial, attractive, aggressive, etc.
posted by kcm at 12:08 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Emphasis on the etc.
posted by lalochezia at 12:09 PM on March 10, 2006


I worked with a guy from india who told me that his mom would be quite disappointed if he married an american woman, since the perception back home was that americans don't take marriage seriously and are likely to cheat and divorce.
posted by selfmedicating at 12:13 PM on March 10, 2006 [2 favorites]


Something to the tune of "She's a valley girl, she's a valley girl, okay yeah, for sure! for sure!", although that's only the american women we look down on, the ones we look up to are all like Belinda Stronach or Carrie Bradshaw.
posted by furtive at 12:14 PM on March 10, 2006


I don't think you'll be able to find much hard data. The Pew Global Attitudes Project asked people about their image of the American people, but it didn't go into much detail: "Hardworking is the positive trait that people around the world most readily associate with Americans. ... On the negative side of the ledger, people around the world are generally inclined to say Americans are greedy and violent. However, most people are not inclined to describe Americans as rude and immoral."
posted by russilwvong at 12:15 PM on March 10, 2006


Promiscuous and fake-looking. Many get this impression from our films, as there is almost always a relationship or at least sexual tension between the lead male and female character, and our actresses tend to have that processed look that comes from personal trainer/diet regimen/plastic surgery/waxing/expensive pampering.

That said, I have rarely met people from other countries who did not acknowledge that this generalization is likely exaggerated.
posted by desuetude at 12:20 PM on March 10, 2006


Belinda Stronach is Canadian.
posted by jon_kill at 12:24 PM on March 10, 2006


I'm an American woman. When I travel overseas, domestically, and even at home, I find that men, especially of Arab descent, (experienced this in Prague, London, Chicago, St. Louis, Milan) are incredibly aggressive towards American women. They get pushy, tail you around, tell you how much they want to buy you things, how beautiful you are etc,and this is usually within 5 minutes of speaking to you, but there's always this underlying evil to it. They cannot take no for an answer and will easily anger over polite yet persistent refusals. Unwarranted physical contact is also to be expected. They're expecting an easy lay from a loose western woman and get pissed off when they can't get it.
posted by pieoverdone at 12:25 PM on March 10, 2006


Easy. Or, at very least, desperate to hook up with non-American men, because American men are dumb, self-centred misogynistic assholes who are crap in bed.
posted by holgate at 12:26 PM on March 10, 2006


Belinda Stronach is Canadian. posted by jon_kill

I know, I'm saying that she epitomises the "go getter"/powersuit woman that a lot of Canadians envision a certain segment of American women to be.
posted by furtive at 12:35 PM on March 10, 2006


As a Brit, no differently to British women. There are the trailer trash who end up on Jerry Springer (in British, "the chavs who end up on Jeremy Kyle"). There are the New York media chicks (in British, "the latte-sipping noomeeja skivvys"). There are the Valley girls (in British, "Essex girls").
posted by wackybrit at 12:39 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


I think "promiscuity" is likely to be a big one. Many societies outside the West (I'm thinking of China and India) have traditions in which marriage, intimacy, and sexuality are taken very seriously. The fact that men overseas get their first impressions of American women from American movies and TV--or even worse, American porn--can lead to an extremely distorted view. Think of Madonna and Britney Spears: overt, in-your-face sexuality is a big part of their image.

An anecdote posted to soc.couples.intercultural in 1994: "As an officer in the International Students Association during grad school I came to know many foreign students (that's how I met my Asian husband). Perhaps because I am outgoing many got the idea that I was 'fast' or ready for anything, anytime. Once I was taking a student on a sight seeing tour in my car. During the ride he nonchalantly says, 'How about a fuck, just between friends?' I almost wrecked the car."

"Aggressive"--may depend on the society of origin. In traditional Chinese society, for example, women usually have a great deal of power in the household (the henpecked husband is a common stereotype); so the equality of men and women wouldn't be such a big deal.
posted by russilwvong at 12:45 PM on March 10, 2006


To generalize, as you asked, I would say that they seem to be loud, wear too much make up, and display a stronge desire to 'be one of the boys' (which is quite unattractive to me).

I'm pretty slutty when I'm on vacation too, so I don't judge them as being particularly easy.

Maybe there are two archetypes, those with passports, and those who think that Tex-Mex is a reasonable limit of cultural tolerance.
posted by dobie at 12:46 PM on March 10, 2006


Having met and worked with a number of US women in third nations, all I can say is there will always be at least one in any group who will perpetuate the stereotype of US women (no matter what the stereotype).
posted by dangerousdan at 12:47 PM on March 10, 2006


American women come across as confident and vibrant, quick-witted and very much able to be one of the guys.

But then that might be that those are the sorts of American women I like.
posted by A189Nut at 12:50 PM on March 10, 2006


Total hos.
posted by xmutex at 12:55 PM on March 10, 2006


My non-American male co-worker beside me speaks:

"I like the American womens because they are smart and know what they want and have thier own money and cars."

Well. There you go.
posted by tkchrist at 1:02 PM on March 10, 2006


Anecdotal evidence from an English hostel owner in Amsterdam, but it provides an answer to your question nonetheless.

We were discussing the things I must do while in town. The usual advice was dispensed, followed by, "You ought to fuck my girlfriend."

Needless to say, I was a bit concerned at the turn of events. "It's okay," he continued, sensing my discomfort, "she's working next door." The implication was that she was the very attractive woman in the window next door.

Perhaps I'm a bit of a Puritan at heart, but I had to ask, "Why would I want to have sex with your girlfriend?"

His response was, "American women are considered to be amongst the worst in bed. Have a go at her."

And you know what? He was right!

I kid. My girlfriend, who was sitting right next to me, nearly killed me for even engaging in the conversation.
posted by sequential at 1:13 PM on March 10, 2006


I am a Brit who has lived in the US for 25 years. One of my early experiences was when I took the subway to work. A woman of around my age sat down next to me and started talking. After the 25 minute journey, I knew more about her sex life than I knew about my own, though I barely uttered a word. American women like to "share" much more than European women.
posted by TheRaven at 1:21 PM on March 10, 2006 [2 favorites]


I've sat next to tons of women on the subway for 25+ minutes. I still know nothing whatsoever about their sex lives.
posted by AwkwardPause at 1:32 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


[removed a few posts, sorry OC & everyone]
posted by jessamyn at 1:33 PM on March 10, 2006


Impossible to say. Not only are american women a varied group, but non-american men are a hugely varied group. I'm sorry, but this is a stupid question.
posted by insomnus at 1:39 PM on March 10, 2006


Large.

Conan Doyle in the Sherlock Holmes books stereotyped American Women (early 1900's) as either sheltered but slutty or foul-mouthed energetic one-of-the-boys with no grace.
posted by PurplePorpoise at 1:53 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


What insomnus said, there's no "in general" answer for this question, only individual anecdotal ones.
posted by signal at 2:01 PM on March 10, 2006


Having said the above, I can (usually) pick out gringa tourists by their footwear, loud voices and disproportionately large hips (regardless of their weight).
posted by signal at 2:04 PM on March 10, 2006


For me (British), I think 'fake' pretty much sums it up. American women always seem overdressed, over-made-up, and with that kind of 'flicky' plastic hair. And when they say something it's usually quite self-obsessed, superficial, and, yes, loud.

Maybe that's not based on a very representative group, though -- I'm mainly talking about university exchange students, tourists and what I see on TV, I guess.
posted by reklaw at 2:18 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


The only thing I can contribute is the joke where a guy is found making love to a corpse washed up on the beach.

Someone else comes by and says "Oh my god, how can you make love to a dead woman?" the first guy says "She's dead? I thought she was American!".

So I think we can add "unresponsive during sex" to the list.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:31 PM on March 10, 2006


American woman are fatter and more religious than European women.
posted by iviken at 2:32 PM on March 10, 2006


Valley girls (in British, "Essex girls").

Those two things do not equate. The others are OK, but Valley girls aren't the same as Essex girls.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:34 PM on March 10, 2006


this is honestly the stupidest question I've ever not seen deleted.
posted by kcm at 3:06 PM on March 10, 2006


You know it would be nice if one day we could see people as individuals instead of projected caricatures. In the US of all places homogeny is very small. A woman from one part NY is different from another. Every general view of American women is factually incorrect. You can not find ONE single characterstic that seperates an American women from any other in the world.
posted by ozomatli at 3:07 PM on March 10, 2006


I think the question has merit, if only to provide varying viewpoints of a topic from different sources. Will it provide "a answer" ? Nah. Does it make for interesting reading/experiences? Sure.
posted by Atreides at 3:12 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Valley girls aren't the same as Essex girls.


Essex girls are more like Jersey girls. Big hair, fake nails, fake tan, high heels, short skirts, mouthy, like hanging out with wide boys (wise guys) who have plenty of money to flash around that's not been earned from gainful employment.
posted by essexjan at 3:13 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Based on my personal experience, European men think USian women are prudish about their bodies, and South American men think that USian women are available (not necessarily that they are easy, but at least there is a chance).

You could also read Foreign Babes in Beijing.
posted by luneray at 5:11 PM on March 10, 2006


Honestly? The most positive attribute that exists in my stereotype is that american women are outgoing and outspoken. On the other hand, I find them to be selfish and self-involved - but I guess that's my biggest gripe about Americans in general.
posted by jedrek at 5:15 PM on March 10, 2006


For me (British), I think 'fake' pretty much sums it up. American women always seem overdressed, over-made-up, and with that kind of 'flicky' plastic hair. And when they say something it's usually quite self-obsessed, superficial, and, yes, loud.

Lol, that's what at least two of my US-ian friends think of English women. I got a mass email from their trip to Liverpool that started with "imagine a town entirely populated by really loud Paris Hilton lookalikes". I've been to Liverpool many times so I couldn't disagree. Overall I'd say TV is coloring your opinion and most US women do spend a lot of time on their appearance and are generally very under dressed compared to Europeans.

As a non-USian woman who's spent a lot of time in the US the thing that strikes me most about American women is how unfriendly most of them are, particularly to other women. Very self-contained.
posted by fshgrl at 6:27 PM on March 10, 2006


generally very under dressed compared to Europeans.

Yes. Quite. Sweatpants and/or trackpants are very very common and very very okay to be seen in here in the US, but any time I've been abroad, I've not seen so many European women dressed like that. Hell, I leave the house like that here in the States, but I won't take my trackpants to London and wear them sightseeing. One sticks out enough when one is lost, without the trackpants, fanny pack, and ridiculous tennis shoes (trainers . . which I prefer, but feel silly and imitative saying).
posted by Medieval Maven at 7:33 PM on March 10, 2006 [1 favorite]


Well, I'm a Brit and I've been madly in love with an American woman for the last seven years. She's great. Man, she's great. I don't think this has anything to do with her being American, however. I think it has to do with her being great.

You're asking for generalisations, so I'll give you some. I like American women, generally. I find certain things about them a little odd, but these are largely cultural and not necessarily restricted to women. Example: dating. Man, I do not get this. I do not get why an allegedly modern country still expects "The Date". It's so fifties, you know? I've never had a "Date" in my life. If a woman and I hit it off... we went out/kissed/shagged, whatever. This formal thing seems so... quaint and false.

But I have t be honest and say that I've generally found American women to be friendlier and more open than European women. Maybe it's the accent.
posted by Decani at 8:05 PM on March 10, 2006


American woman are fatter and more religious than European women.

Dude. Americans are fatter and more religious than sane, evolved human beings other people.
posted by Decani at 8:07 PM on March 10, 2006


most US women do spend a lot of time on their appearance

oops, that should read do not spend a lot of time on their appearance.
posted by fshgrl at 8:09 PM on March 10, 2006


fanny pack
A friendly word of advice for those who don't know: don't refer to a fanny pack as such in England.
Fanny -
This is the word for a woman's front bits! One doesn't normally talk about anyone's fanny as it is a bit rude. You certainly don't have a fanny pack, or smack people on their fannys - you would get arrested for that! Careful use of this word in the UK is advised! (1)
The English call them bum bags or bum packs.
posted by sequential at 8:52 PM on March 10, 2006


As a US woman who's traveled abroad (more than most US citizens,anyway).... more than once I encountered people who were surprised that I was both from the US and not overweight.

I do find the question and answers here interesting. Particularly because after college I spent 3 months in Paris on a work-abroad program. There are a lot of "American" restaurants in Paris. None of which I was able to get a job at and where I was repeatedly told that I didn't "look American." I've never really found out what that meant exactly.
posted by INTPLibrarian at 9:28 PM on March 10, 2006


In general, how do non-American men view American women?

Which one?
posted by semmi at 10:00 PM on March 10, 2006


"She's dead? I thought she was American!".

I've heard the same joke from an Austrailian friend but the punchline was: "She's not dead, she's British".
posted by BoscosMom at 10:20 PM on March 10, 2006


S— says:
It really depends which country. In France, most Americans are too loud and aren't polite. In Italy, though, we're oddly quiet.

In most of Europe, American women are perceived as very prudish. On the other hand, in Pakistan and India, American women are (I guess) perceived as promiscuous -- at any rate I and my female cousins got leered at almost continuously, at age 13, 15, and 16. When there are three park benches full of men staring, it's definitely time to leave. I was able to evade attention more when I wore a sari, so I think it was the American clothing that did it.

Those are the countries I have some experience with, but I would guess that you'd see a lot of the same opposites of stereotypes, depending on which country.
posted by mbrubeck at 10:23 PM on March 10, 2006


[removed a few posts, sorry OC & everyone]
posted by jessamyn at 1:33 PM PST on March 10 [!]


American women know what is/isn't good for you.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 10:32 PM on March 10, 2006


this is honestly the stupidest question I've ever not seen deleted.

I'm finding it fairly educational and entertaining, myself. "Essex Girls"? "Wide Boys"? Who knew?
posted by Rash at 10:45 PM on March 10, 2006


In general, we view them on TV.
posted by flabdablet at 11:04 PM on March 10, 2006


Egocentric - as in thinking that any differential attributes of worth can be found from comparing American women to non American women. The “non American” group is not very homogeneous.
posted by JeNeSaisQuoi at 12:22 AM on March 11, 2006


Regardless of gender, Americans are usually surprised that the world is not actually looking up to the US for style and mannerisms. American women abroad for any length of time tend to morph into another creature over time, less provincially 'Merkan and more flexibly international. (such as losing the polymer hair spray, the orange and pink makeup, the universal shriek of "Oh my Gawwwd" when seeing another American in resturants and pubs....) It usually has to do with finding US styles do not click abroad.
posted by zaelic at 1:44 AM on March 11, 2006


Incidentally, we in Hungary have a style - both feminine and male - that also provokes laughter when exported, the "bunkó srac" and the "csájszi." Gelled hair, turbo-tans, bionic biceps and silicon busts. Hungarian reality TV shows invariably take a pair of them and send them - with camera crew - on foreign trips. Hilarity ensues.

Besides Americans, Internationals will often comment on the unique character of British and Irish women abroad (it is rare to see women drink so much and so loudly,) "Balkanoids" (always the life of the party!) Finns (time to get drunk and play strip poker, everybody!) and Canadians (strange gender divide: nobody gets Canadian humor in men, but Canadian women are generally considered charming.)
posted by zaelic at 4:35 AM on March 11, 2006


Translated from a Thai taxi driver: "They're fat. But they have big tits."
posted by soiled cowboy at 1:44 PM on March 11, 2006


Yeah? Well we Australians have the worlds greatest female impersonators.
posted by johnny7 at 11:55 PM on March 11, 2006


It usually has to do with finding US styles do not click abroad.

This is not true. I just go t back from Paris. With young women the "Blind Date" TV show look appeared to be universally slutty and bad. Young men, fashion wise, were sadly nearly identical to the ones here in Seattle.

I would simply the quality of material and cut in Paris was better, THAT and not exposing the large rolls of belly fat that so many young American women seem fond of doing.

The differences to me were in people in their mid to late thirties who appeared to be dressed much better - in the professional sense - than thier American counterparts. But casual clothes and styles were nearly identical.
posted by tkchrist at 12:37 PM on March 12, 2006


this is honestly the stupidest question I've ever not seen deleted.

Whenever I see a comment like that in a thread it's always one I find more entertaining and/or amusing than most.
posted by Decani at 5:24 PM on March 12, 2006


Conan Doyle in the Sherlock Holmes books stereotyped American Women (early 1900's) as either sheltered but slutty or foul-mouthed energetic one-of-the-boys with no grace.

Where? What stories? Because I've read all the Sherlock Holmes stories numerous times and don't remember anything like that anywhere. There are a number of Americans in them (starting with the Mormons in "A Study in Scarlet", published 1887, not early 1900s) but none, as best I can remember, who are anything like slutty, foul-mouthed, or graceless.
posted by Mo Nickels at 4:51 AM on March 15, 2006


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