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Blood type personality

Everyone in Japan knows that people with Type AB blood are creative, intelligent, and untrustworthy. Wait, what?

Yes, I’m sorry, it’s yet another post about blood. Japan has a widespread belief that someone’s blood type corresponds to their personality. People with Type A blood are patient but stubborn; Type Bs are friendly but unreliable; Type ABs are creative and aloof; Type Os are ambitious but arrogant.

It has about the same validity as a horoscope, but that doesn’t stop people reading horoscopes. (A sidebar: back when I was teaching English to Japanese students, they were all extremely curious about my blood type – now I know why.) I imagine that it’s not always taken seriously. After all, many people read horoscopes as a diversion rather than taking it as gospel.

It has a sadly racist background: apparently some guy in the 1930s discovered that there were quite a few Type 0 people in Taiwan, and decided that rebelliousness must be in their blood. Japan has a history of invading Taiwan, and being resisted. The belief reappeared in the 1970s thanks to a pop-(pseudo)sci book, and it’s now thoroughly mainstream. People have been bullied enough about their blood type that there’s even a word for it: bura-hara. Blood types feature on dating sites and are a field you can put in your Japanese Facebook profile.

Categories: Asia Health & medicine Places Religion & belief Sciences

The Generalist

I live in Auckland, New Zealand, and am curious about most things.

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