Lisbon is amazing! I loved my stay there! Of course I had in my head some of portuguese stereotypes as : The portuguese women have mustache, everybody smell like bacalhau, everybody likes Fado, they are explorers and have so much story to tell us… and so on.
I can say to you that those stereotypes are false, apart from Fado music…
But I was there with a portuguese friend that I’ve met in Milan. She hosted me and push me to explore Lisboa in a deep way.
These are some of Portuguese stereotypes
- Often confused with Spaniards and thus a lot of the Spanish stereotypes will also be applied to them. Their reaction is almost always one.
- Portuguese are generally known as explorers, thanks to Vasco da Gama, Henry the Navigator, Bartolomeo Diaz, Pedro Alvares Cabral and Ferdinand Magellan, among others.
- References to their wine (“porto”), Fado music or sardines are also typical, as are their beaches.
- Portugal suffered under a dictatorship from 1932 to 1974. The conservative regime of Presidents Salazar and Caetano held back many technical and modern innovations that other European countries did adapt. By the time the country became a democracy again it had so many technical stuff to catch up with that for a long time it caused the Portuguese to be viewed as primitive and hopelessly stuck in dated traditions.
- Brazilian people seem to think that the Portuguese are dumb.
- Portuguese women have mustache
- More rarely, Portuguese people are considered more taciturn and fatalistic than other southern European populations, probably because of Fado music (fado means “fate”), mentioned above.
- People from Alentejo (one of the most rural and underdeveloped regions in the country) live life at a snail’s pace, are lazy and mostly old. They’re probably communists too.
- A Venezuelan stereotypical depiction of Portuguese people is that they are all industrious people who run small businesses, usually Mom & Dad stores and bakeries, and every food store in the country is managed by them (in real life, most of the food distribution chain is indeed managed by people of Portuguese descent).
- Fado music is their invention, and it is a delicate and rich music. Cristina Branco is absolutely beautiful and marvelous with her Fado singing and expression. She’s a beautiful and elegant Portuguese woman too, which is a typical thing. Women are particularly elegant there.
- Apart from Fado music, the Portuguese are not the best singers around. They’re quite good at poetry, though (shown in an Astérix book, where a Lusitanian slave is asked to sing, to which he replies that he can’t sing, but he can recite poetry.