HCOM 214: Interpersonal COMM & Conflict

Learning interpersonal communication skills to improve every part of our lives

As a real Asian

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I am a Chinese, who was born and raised in Malaysia, which is in the continent of Asia. My country has three main races: Malays, Chinese, and Indians. Malays are stereotyped as lazy but friendly, Chinese are stereotyped as liars but hardworking, Indians are stereotyped as fearsome but funny. These all started with stories.

This makes it clear that I was being stereotyped as liar but a hardworking person back in my country by other races, but the truth is I am not really hard working and I don’t really lie to people, which is totally the opposite of my general stereotype. I do not think that stereotyping is totally bad because we can still be nice to others even though we stereotyped them. That is how we live together in Malaysia. Stereotyping is a good thing for us because we know who should we ask for help during different situations. When I wanted to hang out and have fun, I would hang out with Malays. When I wanted to go somewhere that is not safe, I would go with an Indian friend. When I wanted to get a project done, I would work with Chinese.

I don’t really know how Asians are stereotyped in America, but I have watched talk shows from stand up comedians, and heard what they said about Asians. Well, it was not that bad, and some made me really proud of it! I don’t know all of the stereotypes, but I will try to list few of them. For example, some Americans think Asians are:

  1. People who can’t drive
  2. “Cheap”
  3. Hardworking
  4. Martial artists
  5. can’t speak English or maybe speak it in funny accents
  6. all of us are Chinese
  7. Mathematic geniuses
  8. strict parents

and the list goes on.

As an Asian, I don’t have strict parents, I’m bad at mathematics, I can drive and I know things about cars, I’m willing to spend than more people do, I can speak four languages including English. It is true that I’m a Chinese and a martial artist, but I was not born in that part of China where people are always fighting and flying around on the trees. Even the great martial artist Bruce Lee was born in San Francisco. I don’t know Kung Fu because I am practicing Mixed Martial Arts. They are different, just in case anyone does not know about it.

Well, stereotyping is not really a bad thing to me. I can take jokes about Asians/Chinese too, and I always find them funny, unless the person who is telling the joke is not funny at all. I don’t mind it as long as someone is not stereotyping me in a mean way. People can stereotype me however they want, I will still be nice and respect them if they are nice to me. I also think that people should always be able to take jokes about themselves, it will probably make the world a happier place. Of course, one should  not cross the line just to be cool while making jokes.

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