Stereotypes can be confusing-sometimes they are demeaning and hateful while other times thy’re downright complimentary- like the stereotype and strong belief that the French are extremely romantic and amazing lovers, maybe even the best lovers in the world. This “French lover stereotype” is usually associated with men but French women also hold the esteemed title of “being good lovers” -often thought of as “expert seductresses” or “super sexy”. But are these cliches true? Why and how does this belief persist?.
Do you believe the French are great lovers stereotype?
Some of you are probably thinking to yourself “NO, that’s not true or that the French are not THE GREATEST lovers”.I agree, it just seems rediculous but that is not the point I want to make. These stereotypes exist whether they are true or not and they are very strong.
What I find truly amazing is that the vast majority of people who believe the French are great lovers have
- never been to France
- have never met a French person
- have never bedded a French lover
- have probably never even had a second hand account of someone else’s experience with a French lover.
In fact, it’s probably these same people who feel or believe the strongest in this stereotype because they have nothing proving otherwise.
To be fair, it’s not just the French that are considered great lovers. Italians, Latinos and the Spanish are also thought to be expert love makers. I am not sure how or when I first heard these stereotypes. I just know that I know them like I know the sun will rise tomorrow. Just because I know them doesn’t mean I completely believe them. Although it is fun to believe they are true.
My Research process
Since I couldn’t exactly go around sleeping with a bunch of French men to prove or disprove this stereotype, I decided the next best thing was to refer to the source of all knowledge.
I lucked out and stumbled across a study that was conducted by a company called “Global Search”. Global Search used a polling service called www.onepoll.com and asked 15,000 “well travelled women” to rate the talents of the men they slept with from 20 different countries. The goal was to find out what nationality of men made the WORLD’S BEST and WORST LOVERS. The survey got my attention for sure and some of the results were shocking.
The Results Of The Poll: The worlds best lovers by country
It was no surprise that the women surveyed put French men in the top 4 , just after Italians, Brazilians and Spaniards. Unfortunately the poll did not list why these well travelled women thought these lovers were good. The shocking part of the poll was which nationalities these ladies considered bad lovers and the reasons they gave.
Please do not be offended if the nationality of your lover is on the worst lover list and remember, these are not my beliefs.
The worst lovers according to the poll are Germans. I was shocked because the reasons given were because they were “too smelly”? Uh ok?
Russians were said to be “too hairy”. What? I’m not sure what body hair has to do with being a bad lover but ok whatever.
English were “too lazy”. What? I refuse to think that JUDE Law is a lazy lover. No NO NO it’s not true.
Americans were “too rough”. Hmm this is weird, I won’t kiss and tell but let me just say I don’t agree with this one
Worlds 20 Best And Worst Lovers
WORLD’S WORST LOVERS:
WORLD’S BEST LOVERS
|1- Germany- (Too Smelly)||1- Spain|
|2- England- (Too Lazy)||2- Brazil|
|3- Sweden – (Too Quick (LOL))||3- Italy|
|4- Holland – (Too Dominating)||4- France|
|5- America –(Too Rough (LOL))||5- Ireland|
|6- Greece –(Too Lovey Dovey)||6- South Africa|
|7- Wales –(Too Selfish)||7- Australia|
|8- Scotland –(Too Loud (LOL))||8- New Zealand|
|9- Turkey –(Too Sweaty)||9- Denmark|
|10- Russia –(Too Hairy)||10- Canada|
Why and How Did This Sex Stereotype Begin?
Ok that was funny and sad at the same time and obviously you shouldn’t take offense or put too much stock into this poll but it still doesn’t change the fact that this dammed stereotypes exists and I still don’t know why it’s so pervasive?
So I dug a little deeper. Not much. Just a little because you really don’t have to look far to find the answer.
Although the root of the “French Lover Stereotype” is hard to pinpoint, if you take a step back and you look at the bigger picture, things become a little clearer.
* NOTE: This is my subjective opinion and you are free to argue with me and tell my my ideas are stupid, I will just ignore you..
But out of them all, Hollywood probably has the strongest influence. Hollywood consistently portrays the French in a very romantic light. Movies like French Kiss, A year in Provence, actresses like Bridgette Bardot and countless others that would have us believe that if you are French, or in France, you will fall hopelessly and romantically in love. How can we not think the French must also be better lovers?
Totally off topic but don’t forget that in the English language, the sensuous act of kissing is called a “FRENCH” kiss.
The second culprit to this silly sex stereotype is attitude.
Have you ever met someone who was kind of nerdy? What did you think? Sexy? Good lover? Probably not.
Some nationalities have a certain air about them. The French Have Sex Appeal.
The best way to describe them is they are the opposite of nerdy. They ooze of confidence, not arrogance. I can’t stand arrogant cocky people. I just want to slap those people.
I have heard some people say that the French are arrogant and rude when in fact it is just confidence.
Guess what guys, women love confident men. And ladies, guys love confident ladies. Not overbearing but confident.
CULTURE & THE ARTS
Lastly, the French lover stereotype may be perpetuated by the French culture and arts.
Everywhere you look, the art, the history, the sculptures give you a a sense of the history of the French and invariably it always points to love, sex, romance or heartbreak. War too but even that is romanticized.
What is interesting is in France, you see nude statues, nude artwork everywhere. You don’t even need to go to a museum. Their are nude statues in parks, on buildings. The advertisements used in public show half naked men and women and no one flinches. There is no shame while the same images might make other countries blush.
The French have been exposed to this their whole life. It seems like they are much more comfortable with the human body and therefore must be more comfortable with sexuality? I know plenty of people who have visited France and thought this.
How To Break Stereotypes:
I’m not sure if my theories hold water but It was fun dissecting and I wanted to make a point…..
This time the stereotype was fun and somewhat flattering but many more are not so flattering and down right insulting.
As i said earlier, most of the time, it’s the people who have never come in contact with a French person that believe most strongly in this stereotype. This is true of most stereotypes.
Travelling and Beyond: The benefits
I’m not saying you need to travel to France and sleep with a bunch of French people to find out if a stereotype is true. I’m just saying that one of the many benefits of travelling is that it helps dispel stereotype like this one. Especially negative and racial inspired ones. Travelling lets you meet people from different walks of life and opens your eyes to new ways of living, creates a deeper understanding and more tolerance.
When we are more understanding, we judge less and we also don’t put people into categories because we are all unique and not all the same even if we come from the same place.
This is one of the best lessons I can tech my kids while travelling. Sure there are lots of other ways to break the stereotype cycle but travelling is way more fun. If you can’t travel, pick up a book, watch a documentary. Just educate yourself before you latch onto a stereotype that could be very damaging.