i think Chinese people are very kind and warm.What about u ？how do u think of Chinese people ？
I'm sorry to say this, but many Chinese students in British universities don't give the impression of being warm or friendly at all. They may be friendly to each other, but they are often rude and uncommunicative to everybody else.
British universities are very cosmpolitain places, and while students from everywhere else in the world will speak English, make international friends, and try to integrate into society here, the Chinese do not. They stick together in groups, and speak only Chinese.
By all means mark me down for making this comment. However, it is the truth. So, Rebekah, if any of your friends are thinking of going to study abroad, please tell them to be friendly to people from other countries.
I like almost all the Chinese people I meet personally. In one-on-one situations, they are fine.
However Chinese people that I don't know, usually in crowds, can seem very rude by western standards. For example, in the subways they will push to get into a car before letting people get out. Same thing with elevators. Another thing I notice is that they don't try to be quiet when other people are sleeping. When they go on tours in other countries, they will stay in a pack and behave as one. If a non-chinese person tries to infiltrate that pack, like in a buffet restaurant for example, they will often get pushed around and treated poorly by western standards. These packs are often loud and unsympathetic to anyone and anything around them. In Beijing, the streets are often dotted with spit, I assume because it's legal to spit there. The best restaurants seem to encourage smoking, so nobody cares about the well-being of non-smokers, children, pregnant women, etc.
@aegis: I think that's more of an issue with society. I don't disagree though, because I live here and it happens all the time. I mean, 9 out of 10 times people do not let others off an elevator first. Only very rarely do I hear a parent correct their children 先下后上 but it's so rare that it just seems futile. Because in a society like this, you can't survive if you're the only polite person. The same goes for standing in line. Because everyone is trying to skip queues it is almost suicidal to obey normal etiquette. And it's the total lack of empathy and shame that is most striking. I've seen people basically walk past 20 who are in line, without even a hint of shame. I guess that's the difference with "face" and "shame" then. Only if you call them out on it in front of everyone they "lose face". Now, in the Netherlands they would be ashamed and silently walk to the back of the line, face blushing red. But here it seems people who trespass try to "save face" by going directly against the person who pointed it out. It's a phenomenon that no matter how many times I see it, still manages to surprise and annoy me. The whole "don't do unto others" just doesn't seem to exist.
@HLRN - I agree it's a societal, or cultural, difference. By their standards, they probably aren't being rude in most cases. And I agree that one cause is the high population density. But I think another big cause has been communism. I don't think this almost desperate concept of unity existed before communism there, but maybe I'm wrong. I remember a little Chinese girl telling me she'd hate to live in the US. I asked her why, and she said there aren't enough people. After that, I paid attention to how they seem to want to be around as many Chinese people as possible most of the time. interesting cultural difference.
But again, that's part of a society in which there are so many people that you as an individual are easily replaceable. Just a statistic. Combine that with being raised by people who never had to individually account for anything and it's not so strange that society is the way it is. Individually differences seem much smaller, and you'll run into the same good and bad people you would run into anywhere.
As for spitting and smoking, my guess is it'll take another 20-30 years before that's totally gone. There are goverment programs but in this case it's more important teenagers don't pick it up, rather than trying to make older people quit which is a lot harder. So the current generation of 20-30 year-olds will probably continue smoking. So we'll have to wait for the next generation of parents who want stricter enforcement of non-smoking laws in public spaces. Especially in the bigger cities the trend seems to be there already so I'm not pessimistic about that.