During my first year of teaching in Korea my boss prepared a conversation questionnaire for some of my elementary school classes. All of the expected questions, that would typically be addressed to young student in a attempt to engage them in conversation, were there: “How old are you? What’s your favourite food? What’s your favourite colour?”
But one stuck out. I ran to my boss: “Why are you asking the kid’s about their blood type?” I wondered out loud, rather incredulous. He just shrugged. But to my surprise, every student in my lively third grade class knew their blood type!
In America, in an attempt to define your personality or character, someone might ask you about your sign (referring of course to the zodiac). But in Korea, personality types are grouped according to blood types…
So when you meet someone for the first time in Korea you might often be asked this question. Koreans place great importance on a person’s blood type and there are a lot of popular beliefs about the subject
Following are the personality traits ascribed to the basic blood types: A, B, AB and O.
Blood Type A:
Positive Traits: Conservative, introverted, reserved, patient, punctual and inclined to be perfectionists.
Worst Traits: Obsessive, stubborn, self conscious and uptight.
Type A’s are said to be considerate of others and loyal to a fault. They can also be secretive and reluctant to share their feelings.
Blood Type B:
Best Traits: Animal-loving, creative, flexible, individualistic, optimistic and passionate.
Worst Traits: Forgetful, irresponsible and self-centred.
Apparently, Type B men have a negative reputation in Korea since their often selfish, unreliable and often prone to anger. Luckily their bad boy image makes them attractive to woman!
Blood Type AB:
Best Traits: Cool, controlled, empathic, introverted and rational.
Worst Traits: Aloof, critical, indecisive and unforgiving.
Type AB’s are said to be rational and good with money. Although inclined to be distant, they prefer harmony and as such, work well with mediators.
Blood Type O:
Best Traits: Ambitious, athletic, robust and self-confident.
Worst Traits: Arrogant, insensitive, ruthless and vain.
They tend to be outgoing, expressive and passionate, but can also be overly competitive.