Purple Solle (purple_solle) wrote in linguaphiles,
Purple Solle

Languages and countries in jokes

In Dutch jokes, Belgium is most commonly made fun of, and Flemish is often used for characters in short jokes. Belgians in these stories are typically dim-witted and jolly. Germany is commonly referenced as well (with a grotesque accent), and Germans are usually portrayed as loud and obnoxious. The British are probably the third most popular, with the person telling the joke trying his best to sound like Maggie Thatcher and more than a few references to tea.

France and the US get used in jokes as well, but not as often. Southern countries such as Spain and Italy, as well as the whole of Scandinavia, seem to get completely left out. Suriname seems to be the country of origin for all black characters, and Chinese is the stereotypical "Asian".

In the last couple of years, because of immigration, Turkish and Moroccan caricatures have become a lot more common in jokes, but are used completely interchangeably.

Most of Eastern Europe, Dutch former colonies, South American countries and Australia don't appear at all.

Characters in our jokes are rarely from the Netherlands, and if an accent or dialect is used, it's usually either "someone from Den Haag" or "a farmer" (with an eastern accent). Upper class accents seem to be based on the suburbs of Rotterdam (or, more commonly, the Queen). Limburg and Friesland are not commonly used; I've never heard anyone imitate the distinctive Limburgse dialect or the Friese language in a joke, unless it's completely improvised.

In your language/country, what languages and nationalities get referenced most often in jokes?

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