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Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Lanrenku8 (IP Logged)
Date: June 06, 2008 05:33AM
Magudo: Do chicken, pigs, and cows can feel hurt? Yes. Then why do you eat them? You don't eat cats and dogs just because they looks cute, and eat other meat just because other animals dont looks cute?
DavyJam: I am from the UK and I also agree 100% with what Magudo has said.
Interestingly in the UK we keep rabbits as pets, but there are also people in the UK who eat rabbits. We keep fish as pets, but we also eat fish. In my opinion this is exactly the same kind of thing as having cats and dogs as pets, but also using them for food. The fact they may be "cute" is irrelevant.
All animals feel pain, but at the end of the day mankind, through it's intelligence, is at the top of the foodchain. If you are a person who eats meat it is hypocritical to speak negatively about other cultures that also eat meat, just because the meat that they eat is different!
I also guarantee you, that if you where starving and your life depended on it, you would eat anything regardless of how cute it was.
Very good points, exactly what I want to say!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/2008 12:59AM by Olive.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Johnnywill (IP Logged)
Date: June 13, 2008 12:06AM
Jay Wrote: I have read on a forum, that Chinese people do not have all those strict politeness rules when eating as in western culture.
No, no ,no! Chinese dining etiquette is no less strict than the Western one!

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/2008 12:54AM by Olive.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Misteral (IP Logged)
Date: August 04, 2008 12:16AM
Hi all, first post from me.

As always, when talking about people's habits and culture, it is impossible to truthfully generalise. I live in Shanghai, China, and have eaten at a fairly wide range of restaurants, from very low budget to upper end. As in the rest of the world, some people in China eat quite delicately, others go at each meal as if it is their first and last!

In general though, these are some of the things I have seen, just to clear up some of the original poster's points.

When someone has food in their mouth but also has something to say, they will hold their hand in front of their mouth while speaking, so that others do not see the chewed contents.

'Spitting' is quite commonplace, but it is done more carefully than the word might suggest. Because so much meat is actually served on the bone (albeit chopped into bite-size pieces), many Chinese enjoy putting the whole thing in their mouth, chewing the meat off, sucking on the remaining piece of bone and then carefully depositing the bone on a plate or straight onto the table. This will usually happen behind the cover of a hand, again. So althogh the bone is 'spat' out, it's not like target-practice.

Dog is not uncommon as a food source here, especially in Winter as the Chinese believe it warms the body more than other meat. I would add to this that there are many many Chinese dog owners who would never dream of adding their beloved pet to the menu. I think the whole cultural difference thing has been covered in previous posts anyway.

There are additional rules, which the West does not hold so important, such as the pouring of wine or beer into someone else's cup, or the supplying of food to someone else's bowl, both signs of respect and friendship.

But basically, taken as a whole, I have found the Chinese to be just as well mannered at the table as any other nation.

Reddo Chinese translation

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Asiancrusader (IP Logged)
Date: August 11, 2008 11:58PM
Being from the US and living 3 months of the year in China and having been to more cities than most Chinese I can say manners are disturbing to a westerner even after 5 years. Common slurping of food, big loud snot gulping spitting on floor next to you, nose picking, kids peeing, and shitting on floor at next table, and of course sharing same plates of food as it is rotated around table. Yes eating dog, donkey, cats and other things we may not be used to occurs but that is culture of eating variety, and not wasting. Yes they chew tiny pieces of chicken off bones then spit the bones onto a plate (no hand covering). This not everyone but I would say 25% of the people eat this way. Does not seem like much but when you consider the quantity of people it can be overwhelming. AND many are just loud and boisterous disturbing others, and allow kids to run rampant throughout the restaurant.
One thing that is interesting is in USA we will use a toothpick in the open, in China generally they will cover their mouth as they use a toothpick, but talk showing food. Most of this is about education and will change as time goes on, as I have also been to Taiwan and their eating habits are more westernized.
When in China it is difficult to see woldlife and I presume it is because they have eaten most wildlife (pigeons, birds, donkey, dogs, cats, rabbits, squirrels). Really do not see much wildlife, never saw a dear or similar, no pigeon except to eat. Dogs are becoming more common as pets. But the local dogs are different than western dogs they are not freindly, and happy to see you as western dogs, seem more like cats. Feed them and they do as they wish.
The most disturbing is allowing the kids to pee, or poop on floor next to table.
By the way I have been to and stayed and ate at each of these cities numerous times Shanghai, Shenzhen, Xiamen, Jiangsu, Hangzhou, Yiwu, Xian, Guangzhou, Forsham, Humen, Ningbo, Taizhou, Wenzhou, Qing dao, guillin, Hong Kong, Taiwan. Now you have an opinion from someone who has viewed both worlds.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Monica.Y (IP Logged)
Date: August 12, 2008 04:54AM
agree with dshowgina

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: dshowgina (IP Logged)
Date: June 29, 2007 04:16AM
Dear Jay,
Chinese people do have table manners, and the above-mentioned will not take place in public place, especially when have meals with strangers. In acient China, there is an old saying: "eating and sleeping without any words", which asks people to keep silence when eating and sleeping. however, this rule doesn't apply to most chinese now. they talk and communicate when eating together, and believe they can enhance intimacy and know each other better through this way. Thus, Chinese usually prefer to negociate business at dinner table. but the other bahaviors you mentioned above are also not encouraged and will be regarded as rude in china. however, table manners are not so strict if you are family members or intimate friends.
Overally, chinese table manner is different with western countries', but what really matters is our goodwill and sincirity. hope to have dinner with you, so we can learn more from each other

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/31/2007 11:29AM by Olive.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Tactical321 (IP Logged)
Date: September 01, 2008 01:26AM
OMFG. Ever since my visit to china last month i never felt so traumatized. i seriously turned into a white person after arriving there. my asian looks just got ripped away and the white meat turned inside out. Traffic is unbelievable. making a u-turn on the opposite lane over all the cars on a red light is the usual. people j-walk on the street while cars are zooming through. and the thing is no one dies and cars look perfect condition. oh wait back to the topic. chinese people are rude as f$%&. sorry to be using profanity but they are. but there are 2 types the loud ones with angry attitude (means polite in their language) or the ones who talk like they have down syndrom. they chew so loud and spit everywhere. they will use you to get somewhere. i remembered some chinese guy pushed me down and used me to get to a high shelf. WTF!!! anyways they are the loudest and rudest table mannered people. especially the men. oh yeah, my fiance told me that they eat fresh monkey brains like as in bat the monkeys face and mallet the head open and then they dig in. i was frigtened. i joked to her by saying don't tell me you guys eat people. she replied sometimes those cost a little more. OMFG!!!!!!!! zombies but worse.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Violetnick (IP Logged)
Date: December 17, 2008 12:02AM
i have eaten many meals with various chinese students and their eating style was no different than my well mannered canadian style. the only difference i can see is that they will VERY DISCREETLY spit out bones onto the table. so discreetly infact that it took me a few meals to even realize what they were doing. and if you don't like how someone eats...go home and eat by yourself.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Uberche (IP Logged)
Date: December 17, 2008 12:57AM
I think it will really depend on who you are eating with. I've eaten with very polite Chinese and I've eaten with Chinese people who made me feel not hungry even though I ate nothing because of the horror of eating with them. But such is life.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Canuck (IP Logged)
Date: December 18, 2008 12:28AM
the only thing i don't like, which happens here in Canada as well, while when you have group dinner and someone talks on the cell.

a lot of Chinese do so,then I think their full attention should be on your dining companion or this will give the dangerous impression that you think there is someone more important than him or her.

I think table manner also depends on what kinda food you eat.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Tautau (IP Logged)
Date: December 18, 2008 01:44PM
My dear Cantonese friend who has grown up and educated in Shenzhen and Beijing and who is extremely elegant in every way works as a professor in Bangkok. He has been reprimanded by his colleagues about slurping his noodle soup at lunch time. When I visited him in his hometown in China and went out to dinner with his high-so friends, everything that you mentioned was being executed in the top-end restaurant, including putting out cigarettes on the floor. He doesn't eat pork though, and he wouldn't eat things westerners wouldn't eat. But come to Thailand and you can nibble on deep fried cockroaches.

Re: Chinese eating politeness rules
Posted by: Ali.B (IP Logged)
Date: December 30, 2008 02:51PM
This is very helpful.

I like the drawings.

We have similar customs in the USA ,but we are not always careful enough. When traveling we must be more careful to respect customs.

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