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Foreign Culture Fetish

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I have seen the things which they have brought to the King out of the new lands of gold... All the days of my life, I have seen nothing that reaches my heart so much as these, for among them I have seen wonderfully artistic things and have admired the subtle ingenuity of men in foreign lands.
Albrecht Dürer, on seeing an exhibition of Aztec artifacts sent to Europe by Hernán Cortés.

Some folks have an uncritical admiration for all aspects (not just one medium) of a foreign culture. Often they're only enamored of The Theme Park Version of the given culture, purposefully ignoring all negative points.

This can lead at times to Hype Backlash against, well, an entire country. Also often leads to Pretty Fly for a White Guy on the part of the fan. Common targets include Japan (mostly on the internet), France (among the intellectuals) and Rome (historically). In real life this phenomenon is called xenophilia, which is a whole other trope in fiction, usually. Often accompanied by Cultural Cringe. Leaders may hire a Cadre of Foreign Bodyguards.

No Real Life Examples on the personal level, please. Cultural or country level examples are fine.

A sub-trope of Cultural Rebel. Compare Pretty Fly for a White Guy, Germans Love David Hasselhoff, Occidental Otaku, and Cultural Personality Makeover. Contrast Creator Provincialism and Cultural Posturing. Might overlap with Cyclic National Fascination. See also Race Fetish, where this sort of thing gets a bit more...personal. Not to be confused with Foreign Fanservice.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Nadeshiko "Naddy" Yamato from The 100 Girlfriends Who Really, Really, Really, Really, Really Love You claims to be from America when first introduced, but it's quickly revealed that she's actually Japanese. Her strict and traditional parents raised her to be a Yamato Nadeshiko, but she absolutely hated it. When she found an American movie and saw how much freedom American children were allowed in it, she became obsessed with American culture and started defining her entire identity around it.
  • Bleach: Chojiro Sasakibe is a Japanese man obsessed with Western culture, mostly England. For example, he prefers English style tea to Japanese style tea, and his Shikai makes his Zanpakuto change from a katana to a rapier. It's one of the things he's always at odds with Commander Yamamoto about.
  • Blend-S:
    • Main character Maika Sakuranomiya is obsessed with anything that isn't Japanese, to the point where her first childhood crush was...Colonel Sanders of all people. This motivates her to find a job at Stile in the first place—she wants the money to study abroad. This likely has something to do with the fact that she comes from a very traditionally Japanese family.
    • Her manager, the Italian Dino, also holds this towards Japan, hence him moving there in the first place.
  • Kiniro Mosaic: The two leads, Alice and Shinobu, both have a fetish for each other's cultures, which ties into their friendship. Shinobu did a homestay at Alice's home in Britain because she loves Western culture so much, and Alice then moves to Japan both to be with Shinobu and experience Japanese culture. The main difference between them is that Alice studied Japanese so much that she can speak the language fluently and knows more about the culture than many real Japanese people, whereas Shinobu can only say "hello" and nothing else and has only superficial knowledge about the English culture despite having lived in the United Kingdom for a while.
  • It goes both ways for many of the characters in Lapis Re:LiGHTs. Characters from the West Europe-inspired Waleland and Dortdgard are enamored with the culture of the Japan-inspired Yamato and many transfer students from Yamato are just as taken with theirs.
  • Furinkan High School's Principal Kunō of Ranma ½ has gone native after a three-year vacation in Hawaii. Since then, he's since always wearing gaudy Hawaiian Shirts, playing the Ukulele, sporting a miniature palm tree atop his hair, and peppering his Japanese speech with English and Hawaiian terms. He also decorates his office with all sorts of Hawaiian knick-knack and even recreates a fake Hawaiian beach somewhere under the school. He's a weirdo all-around, although this Hawaiian fetish is hardly the worst thing about him — the coconuts and pineapples he throws around are explosives, for starters.

    Comic Books 
  • In Lucifer, the demons developed a vogue for 18th-19th century England and were extremely pleased to have a soul from that era teach them how to best immerse themselves in it. It's implied that this obsessing over other cultures is pretty much all that the high ranking demons do anymore.
  • Asterix:
    • The Gaulic chief Aplusbégalix (Cassius Ceramix in English) has this for the Roman empire. Even if it makes no sense. "We'll build an aqueduct even if we don't need one, because it's ROMAN!" The Roman Big Bad even jokes that if all Gauls were like him it's the Romans who would look Gaulic. Also note how everything in his home is a cobbled mix of Roman and barbarian elements.
    • The same comic starts with a panel where a young Gaulic man gets his hair cut Roman style, while an older, long-haired Gaul looks on disapprovingly. Just like an old square from The '50s or The '60s would when meeting a hippie (alternatively, a member of La Résistance seeing a collaborator).
  • Under Frank Miller's pen, The Kingpin has shown an interest in Japanese culture. This was carried over to Spider-Man (PS4).
  • New Super-Man explores this. The reason Kenan becomes Superman, and why Western-style superheroes (as well as supervillains) are said to be on the rise in China, while Ahn Kwang-Jo has a predilection for a cartoon about a family with yellow skin - and no, we're not talking about racist asian caricatures. He has to resort to illegal means to watch it in his home country, though.
    "The s-son is always telling his father, "Don't have a cow, man!"
  • The Land Lovers were a group of Atlantean teens in 90s Aquaman who were fascinated with surface world culture; they comprised Sheeva the mermaid, Blubber the whale, and Breakout Character Lagoon Boy.

    Fan Works 
  • In Chrysalis Visits The Hague, as per the general Fanon consensus, Lyra Heartstrings is borderline-obsessed with the human world (and has been even since before its in-story discovery).
  • In Queen of All Oni, Filler Villain Anton Mortimer is obsessed with Asian culture, to the point he's basically a dark parody of an Otaku.
  • This can happen to fanfic authors too. A.A. Pessimal realised, after a character only ever intended to be a one-off take on white South Africans took off and took on a life of her own, that he'd better stop winging it, and do some bloody research about South Africa so as to get it halfway right. Word of God is that the author now finds the place and its history and culture to be so bloody fascinating and attractive that he even started formally learning Afrikaans. And in more recent tales, a Discworld take on Russia, based on bare bones in canon, is emerging. The author points out that at least this time he actually studied a bit of Russian in school. And he is finding Russian culture and language every bit as absorbing as he does Southern African.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Another Time, Another Place, Janie falls in the love with the new and exciting culture that the Italian POWs bring to her austere village.
  • Barbarella: Dildano is a Sogoite who believes that My Species Doth Protest Too Much. He thinks of Earth as the "planet revolutions" and is very admiring of its culture (this being set in the far future where Earth has become ultra-pacifistic). His attempt at a revolution in Sogo is inspired by Earth history and he enjoys partaking in other aspects of the culture, while deriding his own as savage.
  • The Last King of Scotland gets its name from its subject Idi Amin's real-life love of Scottish culture. "The Last King of Scotland" is a real title Amin gave himself. Conversely, he specifically despises English culture, so his affinity may also have something to do with seeing both Uganda and Scotland as rebels to the British state. When first meeting Nicholas, he immediately befriends him on the basis that he's a Scot, although he adds that redheaded women are ugly to him and other Africans.
  • Django Unchained has Candie, who has one for the French. Strangely, it only extends to being called Monsieur Candie and naming a slave after a character from The Three Musketeers, he can't speak or understand French. When Schultz has to tell him that Alexandre Dumas was black (by the standards back then, having a black grandfather was enough), it's enough to stun him into silence.
  • Mr. Devlin in Fred 2: Night of the Living Fred who suspected by Fred to be a vampire and probably have a thing for Transylvania. The truth is this is just a misunderstanding and Devlin is into Korean culture instead. He later teaches Fred about bulgogi and kimchi and keeps an East Asian armor in his house.
  • Leroy Green in The Last Dragon is an African-American man who displays a lot more interest in Chinese culture than just learning Kung Fu, so much so that he almost feels like a foreigner in his own hometown, to the amusement/irritation of his brother. This results in an interesting contrast with the Big Bad, who has a similar fixation on Japanese culture and styles himself after the Samurai of old. Also humorously flipped around later in the movie when Leroy meets a couple of actual Chinese people who dress and act like stereotypical black teens, complete with nigh-indecipherable Jive Turkey slang.
  • The character John Connor spends a good deal of the film Rising Sun pontificating about how effective and powerful Japanese culture is. Ironically, the point of this was not to compliment Japan but to warn American readers of the threat the nation posed to 1990s America.
  • Rob Lowe's character in Thank You for Smoking loves Japanese decorations; he has a koi pond, a rock garden, Japanese art, and wears a kimono in his off-time.
  • Played for Laughs in Balls of Fury where the hero Randy Daytona is asked by the FBI to help them take down the reclusive Chinese crime lord Feng, who turns out to be the very white Christopher Walken living it up as a Fu Manchu style supervillain, and even more hilariously it is mostly uncommented on.
  • In Mario (1984), Simon is deeply obsessed with all things Arabic. He dresses his little brother Mario up like a sheik, plays elaborate Alternate History games in which the Arabs conquer all of Europe, and even leads the neighborhood kids in a prayer to Allah despite the fact that they live in a Catholic area.
  • In Quigley Down Under, Marston, an Australian cattle baron, is obsessed with The Wild West of America, collecting cowboy memorabilia and fancying himself The Gunslinger. This eventually comes back to bite him when Surprisingly Realistic Outcome occurs and, as Quigley tells him, "This ain't Dodge City, and you ain't Bill Hickock."
  • Rush Hour: The Chinese consul Han's daughter, Soo-Yung, is kidnapped by Hong Kong crime lord Juntao as revenge for having his collection of ancient Chinese artifacts seized. Towards the end, we find out that Juntao is really Thomas Griffin, a British diplomat and Han's close friend, who talks about how he spent years amassing the collection.
  • The Bride of Kill Bill has a definite obsession with Japanese culture. Speaking the language and extoling the "Exquisite art of the Samurai sword" despite being white as sour cream.
  • Ten Little Mistresses: One of the younger mistresses, Moon Young, styles herself as South Korean and even sprinkles Korean words in her dialogue. When Coco asks if she is of Korean descent, Moon Young admits she just does it for fun.

  • Cat Planet Cuties: The series as a whole is massively pro-American, both in pop culture references and story structure, on account of the author being a giant westaboo. In the anime adaptation, nearly every episode's Cold Open is a parody of a famous western series, and all the main characters' restaurant of choice is A&W "All American Food©". To put this into perspective, when was the last time any of you American readers even saw an A&W?
  • Rias Gremory of High School D×D is very fascinated by Japanese culture, to the point that she has several Japanese artifacts in her bedroom. Having a Japanese boyfriend might count too.
  • In the historical novel A Gathering of Days, the main character doesn't want to call her stepmother Ann "Mother", so she settles on "Mamann". The stepmother approves, saying something like "we can say it is after the French, and therefore the height of fashion."
  • Tinker: Windwolf is fascinated by human cultures, which is one of the reasons why he's the highest-ranking elf who deals with the humans on a regular basis, as Viceroy of the Westernlands.
  • The Western Monk from Cultivation Chat Group, who is obsessed with Chinese martial arts and Buddhism. Unusually for this trope, he's portrayed positively; he manages top cultivate a powerful aura of virtue (which requires significant dedication to ferrying the souls of the deceased), and Shuhang notes with annoyance that despite being a foreigner the Western Monk's Chinese is even better than his.
  • Shanti Shruti (born as Amanda Weed in Skokie, Illinois) in The Poison Apples loves India and everything and anything related to it. Much more than her husband, who is actually from India, or her step-kids, who have Indian heritage. She studied in India, became a yoga teacher, changed her name to an Indian name, had a big Indian wedding even though her husband was ambivalent about it, wears a bright pink sari as casual everyday wear and decorates her entire house with Indian decorations.
  • Discworld:
    • Lord Hong, Big Bad and grand vizier of the Agatean Empire in Interesting Times, is fascinated with Ankh-Morpork, as he sees its culture as more dynamic and adaptable than his own country's. He plans to take it over, and to this end, has an authentic Ankh-Morpork nobleman's costume made, which he likes to try on and admire in the mirror when no one's around. He thinks it would help show the locals who their natural leader is. It doesn't occur to him that the Morporkian masses would look at someone dressed like that and see an insufferable toff they'd like to heave half a brick at, just like it doesn't occur to him to understand the mindset of Agatean peasants.
    • In Thud!, the dwarfs and trolls at Mr Shine's Thud Society tend to become this for each other's cultures, due to the way the board game encourages you to see both sides. So you see dwarfs carrying clubs, and trolls with battle bread and iron helmets. One troll player hopes to learn from the greatest dwarfish Thudmeisters, who Mr Shine says will "teach him how to play like a troll". Since the more usual interaction between dwarfs and trolls is all-out war, this is presented as unambigiously a good thing.
    • Human fetishisation of dwarf culture, especially in the spin-off material, is generally presented as a bit silly — there are in fact rituals a human can do to join dwarf culture, but it's strongly implied that the sort of people who go to restaurants with stone-effect wallpaper and human food shaped to look like rats haven't done this.
  • Under Heaven: Nearly everyone in Kitai would Squee over Sardian horses; some of it has to do with the fact that local horses (including from the 'barbaric' North) are, relatively, ill-fed shaggy-haired ponies. (Local conditions do have something to do with the differences.) Also, there are certain foreign women that would command high prices in the brothels precisely because they are foreign; they don't even have to confirm to the standards of knowing current poetry, and the latest musical forms.
  • In the Doctor Who New Adventures novel Original Sin, many humans in the Earth Empire have an alien culture fetish, ranging from collecting model spaceships to extreme body modification to look alien. The Doctor darkly notes that this has no effect on the Empire's Fantastic Racism regarding the aliens themselves.
  • The Witch of Knightcharm: Starlyght is introduced telling Chosovi, who is implied to be Native American, how much she enjoys talking to members of 'enlightened' peoples. It's made clear that she fetishizes all sorts of indingeous cultures, though it's also clear she doesn't really know anything about the spiritual traditions she's appropriating.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Atlanta: When Earn and Van visits one of her old school friends in a Juneteenth-themed party, they meet the woman's husband, a rich white man who loves and praises African-American culture. Even all of the couple's friends are prominent and rich black people. Earn later points out that the reason he's able to travel to Africa and immerse himself in its culture is because he's so rich, an opportunity not afforded to him, an African-American himself.
  • Daniel LaRusso in Cobra Kai has a strong affection for Japanese culture, owing to the influence of his Okinawan sensei and surrogate father, Mr. Miyagi. He gives away a free bonsai tree with each sale of a vehicle at his business, and meticulously makes sashimi for special occasions. It even gets in a Take That!, as Daniel gets criticized online for cultural appropriation.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Doctor appears to have a massive thing about 19th/20th century British culture, always using a British accent of some kind (generally Received Pronunciation but they've been Scottish, Cockney, Manc and posh-Scouse in some incarnations) and usually dressing in a combination of 19th/early 20th and late 20th fashion ('70s Hair and knitwear over Oscar Wilde Victorian clothes! A 1940s leather jacket over a modern jumper and black jeans! A 1920s-style suit with a Hipster influence! A Nineties-style suit with a 1930s trenchcoat!). They always seem to hang around this era and place, and praise it a lot. Both the Fifth and Eighth Doctors have referred to themselves as either almost-English or honorary-English. Susan displays one too, getting very excited about whatever pop music is in the charts, and mentioning a lot how being in 20th Century England has been the best time in her life.
    • According to Susan, the First Doctor has a massive thing about The French Revolution, and says it is his favorite period in history. The Doctor takes great pleasure in this story indulging in a bit of Cosplay and roleplaying as locals rather than just being blatantly anachronistic as usual. The Tenth Doctor also inherited this trait, having a bit of a fetish for anything French.
    • The English develop a fetish for Dalek culture in the audio story "Jubilee". Since Daleks are A Nazi by Any Other Name, the Doctor is quite freaked out by this.
    • The Third Doctor seems to particularly like Venusian culture; a master of Venusian lullabies, Venusian hopscotch and Venusian aikido.
    • The Twelfth Doctor visually looks like a much older man than the more recent incarnations that preceded him, and he's as crotchety as that sounds. Only, not like your average old man, because he's usually dressing like an alt high-schooler, with a love of hoodies and generally comfortable but low-contrast dark clothing as much as he loves loud guitars and sunglasses. Basically, a 2010s alt teen in the body of an old man.
  • Elementary: The victim of the week in "You Do It To Yourself" is a Trent Annunzio, a white man who was professor of Asian Studies at a local university. As Holmes and Watson investigate it becomes clear that Annunzio's obsession with Chinese culture ran far deeper than an academic interest. In addition to frequently visitng the country he was also a regular at multiple illegal mah-jong parlors and was treating his eye cancer with traditional Chinese herbal remedies. His "wife" is a Chinese woman who is actually an illegal immigrant he was abusing using techniques developed by the Chinese secret police.
  • Mad Men's Bert Cooper is very much the Orientalist. That is, the old-school version of the Japanese culture fetish; he has shōji partitions and has ukiyo-e prints (including The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife) in his office (which he makes people remove their shoes before entering).
  • The Mandalorian: Moff Gideon is an Imperial leader who carried out an ethnic cleansing on the Mandalorians prior to the events of the series and nuked much of their homeworld. Despite this, he shows a keen and rather twisted fascination with their culture that colors much of his own behavior and later schemes, such as giving his troops (and himself) beskar armor and having them emulate Mandalorian fighting styles. He generally is portrayed as something of an especially extreme cultural appropriator, someone who believes that he can "harvest" Mandalorian traditions and assimilate them into the Imperial Remnant to "improve" upon both the cultural qualities and the Empire. This paradoxically manifests in him showing odd reverence for shallow aspects of Mandalorian culture, yet viewing the actual Mandalorians themselves as barbarians worthy of destruction.
  • On My Name Is Earl, one of Catalina's uncles adopted the ways of American Delinquents after seeing them on television. (However, he comes across as Totally Radical, because his TV broke back in The '80s. Curiously, Earl recognizes this, even though he himself comes from Camden, which is a bit of a Retro Universe, itself stuck in that same decade.)
  • Georg from Næturvaktin admires anything to do with Sweden and Swedish culture. A new employee from Sweden is one of the few people in the entire series he treats pleasantly or respectfully.
  • Dwight Schrute from The Office (US) seems to have a special liking for the culture of India. He can reel off facts about Diwali with fanboy enthusiasm and defends the Bollywood nerds that Kelly is chagrined about her parents wanting her to date. As for Kelly herself, he might be a little attracted but this is outweighed by what he sees as her annoying traits.
  • Jeremy Jamm, the resident Jerkass on Parks and Recreation, loves what he calls "Chinese crap", i.e. random things from every East Asian culture put together with no awareness of what they are.
  • David Rose on Schitt's Creek is a Japanophile. He's talked about his visits to Japan, wears clothes by Japanese high fashion house Commes des Garcons and once purchased a Japanese cologne that was meant to smell like a car crashing into a cedar tree. Also, his father gives him a bag of yen for Christmas, and his best friend Stevie invites him to see the cherry blossoms at the Elm Valley Botanical Gardens. He's very disappointed when he doesn't get to go on the tour, but he consoles himself with drunk karaoke.
  • Curzon and Jadzia Dax from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine were both enamored of Klingon culture- Curzon is a legend among Klingons and Jadzia married Worf and joined the House of Martok. Ezri Dax, the next incarnation, was less fond of Klingon culture (she retches at the sight of gagh), and cast a much more critical eye on the Empire, pointing out the vast amounts of hypocrisy and corruption among a people that claimed to be "honorable".

  • Kate Bush's song "Egypt" is narrated by a person obsessed with a surface-level image of Egypt, which they've never been to, based on romanticized depictions of it in western media. According to Bush, the aggressive tone of the instrumental breaks is meant to contrast these wistful lyrics by representing the un-glamorous reality of the country, describing the juxtaposition of the two as an allegory for "how blindly we see some things."
  • The Lonely Island's song "Ras Trent" is from a white Ivy League student who sings about his love Jamaican culture in a thick Caucasian accent.
  • Taylor Swift: In "London Boy," after falling in love with the titular boy, the (American) narrator loves everything English.
    And now I love high tea, stories from Uni, and the West End
    You can find me in the pub, we are watching rugby with his school friends
    Show me a gray sky, a rainy cab ride
    Babes, don't threaten me with a good time
    They say home is where the heart is
    But God, I love the English

  • From the Gilbert and Sullivan operas:
    • In The Mikado, the roster of "...society offenders who might well be underground, and who never would be missed" in Ko-ko's "little list" song includes "... the idiot who praises, with enthusiastic tone,/All centuries but this and every country but his own."
    • In Patience, Bunthorne confesses that "I do not long for all one sees/That's Japanese" as part of a greater confession that his devotion to the Aesthetic movement is mere affectation "born of a morbid love of admiration".
    • In Utopia, Limited, the uncritical adoption of British ways by its colonies is one of the two main targets note  of Gilbert's satire.

    Video Games 
  • Mass Effect: Andromeda: squadmate Cora Harper is majorly into asari culture, stemming from the time she spent training with asari commandos back in the Milky Way. Ironically, the actual asari on the team, Peebee, disdains her own culture and tries to acknowledge it as little as possible. This causes some friction between the two.
  • The World Next Door: Jun, the protagonist, is a massive fangirl of the magical world of Emrys. As a result, she's thrilled when she wins a lottery allowing her to visit it during the time when a portal opens between Earth and Emrys, and dialogue choices can really play up how much she geeks out over Emrys's culture and magic.
  • Seiyo Akanisshi in Yandere Simulator is obsessed with all things western and prepares miniature hamburgers for the Cooking Club.
  • Scratches: James Blackwood had an entire room in his mansion set up as a gallery for all things African culture. His interest turned out to make things worse when he brought a cursed mask belonging to a cannibalistic South African tribe.
  • The New Order Last Days Of Europe: The Aryan Brotherhood in Russia is fascinated with Nazi Germany and convinced Russia must become culturally Aryan to survive. This extends to espousing Nazi ideals themselves even though as Russians they would be considered untermensch within the Nazi racial hierarchy.
  • Jagged Alliance: "Tex" Colburn is a mercenary who insists on dressing like a cowboy, referring to enemy soldiers as "Rustlers!" and taking to the field with a single-action revolver in every hand. All of this would be weird enough, but on top of his aggressive Texanism, he's actually Japanese.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Strawberry Vinegar, Licia's mother loves Japan, to the point where she cosplays around the house and has a bonsai tree in their garden.
    Licia: It keeps dying, though, since the air in Hell is filled with sulfur.
  • Kinzo Ushiromiya from Umineko: When They Cry has a fetish for western cultures in general (though he seems to like Italy and Germany in particular), being obsessed with the western occult, building himself a western-style mansion to live in and giving his children and grandchildren western names transliterated from kanji. His flashback in EP 7 shows that he was fond of foreign literature as well.
  • In the It Lives series, Tom Sato (who is Japanese) mentions at one point that his first girlfriend called him Sempai. (He wasn't a fan.)
  • Ace Attorney:
    • In the original Japanese script of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, the Zaimon brothers (renamed the Marshalls in the dub) are a pair of Japanese police officers who dress and act like American cowboys.
    • Conversely, in the English version of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, prosecutor Simon Blackquill is an American (possibly British given his accent and occasional vernacular) man who styles himself as a samurai and frequently uses Japanese Honorifics in his speech. His mentor Metis Cykes similarly dressed in a kimono and kept a collection of Japanese artifacts in her lab — including the katana that was used to kill her.

    Web Animation 

    Web Comics 
  • Something*Positive:
    • One of the characteristics of the strip's catgirls is that they know virtually nothing about Japanese culture, but are obsessed with it anyway.
    • Mentioned by one of the characters after she scared off some guy with a Calling Your Attacks moment: she says adding "Ancient Secret Chinese technique" will scare opponents off much more effectively, adding "White people are so much fun" or words to that effect.
    • There's a strip where PeeJee and Aubrey (both Asian) mock Gwen Stefani's pop adoption of Japanese memetics, complete with having four "Harajuku girls" who follow her around and aren't ever referred to by their real names. PeeJee suggests the girls are likely "tutoring" Stefani in Japanese — "Seeing a withered little pop star trying to order sushi in Japanese and instead telling the waiter about her intense venereal disease would be better than any Christmas bonus I've ever received."

    Web Original 

    Web Videos 
  • Regular Car Reviews: A car review show featuring two guys from Pennsylvania, Brian "Mr. Regular" Reider and Nick "The Roman" Roman. Mr. Regular likes stuff from Australia and New Zealand (especially New Zealand, after Season 20, in which they traveled to NZ to do car reviews). This includes both automobiles (he has a solid respect for Holden and Ford Australia) and slang. He particularly likes the word "bogan", and even described the Subaru WRX STI as a "cashed-up bogan" of a car in the BMW 335i review. He is also fond of the Aussie car-culture term "hoon" (for ostentatiously reckless joyriding); though that word had already caught on in some corners of American car culture, he seems to use it in practically every video involving a cheap, high-powered or tight-handling car since the first trip to NZ. (The Roman, for his part, likes one Australian in particular.)

    Western Animation 
  • Deepak from 101 Dalmatian Street is a dalmatian with a deep admiration for cats. He tries to emulate them to the point where he coughs up a fur ball at one point.
  • Code Lyoko: Ulrich has an interest in Japanese culture, and even acknowledges a few customs for Yumi's sake.
  • The Legend of Korra:
    • Empowered Badass Normal Visionary Villain Zaheer's fascination with Air Nomad culture has led part of the fandom to label him a "weeablew." His fascination with it is what blows (if you’ll pardon the pun) his cover when he tries to infiltrate Air Temple Island. Kya quickly realizes that he’s a bit too knowledgeable (after he breaks into her brother’s study) to be some random guy.
    • The Air Acolytes are non-benders who took up the Air Nomad culture under the leadership of Avatar Aang. A few of them appear to worship the ground that Tenzin and his family walk on. After Harmonic Convergence happened, at least one of them became an actual airbender. Let's just say that he was extremely enthusiastic about it.
  • In Lilo & Stitch and Lilo & Stitch: The Series, Pleakley is the one non-Earthling who's a fan of Earth and had studied it extensively, though he was never able to visit it until the events of the movie. While he gets a lot of details wrong because he was only able to infer through distant observation, he is still a trusted authority because he at least knows more about Earth, by a long shot, than any of his colleagues.
  • Star Wars Rebels: Grand Admiral Thrawn is Wicked Cultured in general and frequently studies the artistic output of enemies to get in their head, but he shows a particular fascination with Twi'lek culture that seems more than strictly professional. An Imperial officer badmouthing Twi'lek art nearly gets decked for it by Thrawn in an entirely uncharacteristic display of anger, and he makes sure to steal a family heirloom of Hera's for his private collection, acting morally indignant when Hera says she would rather see it destroyed than in his hands.

    Real Life 
  • It is almost a world-wide phenomenon that many cultures and races, including those with a very limited relationship with African-Americans, have an extreme interest and fetish with African-American culture. This can lead to those who are not African-American combining different regions of African-American culture into one persona. This occurrence is so pervasive that the major factors of African-American culture, like hip-hop, can be found with a different culture and race's spin on it in every corner of the world.
    • The African-American community itself has found common ground with other foreign cultures. French fashion and high culture has historically been popular as an aspirational status symbol—black Americans are some of the biggest consumers of cognac, for instance. There has been a strong history of African-American converts to Islam, to the point where 20% of all Muslims in America are African-American converts. Asian martial arts, especially from kung fu movies and fighting games, are extremely popular in the community, inspiring movies such as The Last Dragon and the music of Wu-Tang Clan
  • Modern Speculative Fiction sometimes replaces Japan with China as the superior world power, but Westerners aren't as quick to fetishize Chinese culture (with the notable exception of Joss Whedon and Firefly fans), following at least a century of Yellow Peril and Red Scare stereotyping of China as an Evil Empire that continues to this day affecting people of Chinese descendant in the West.
    • A possible reason for this is that, while their histories have had their ups and downs, the United States has a very long record for fetishizing the Japanese instead of the Chinese. So it probably always came much more natural otherwise.
    • A Cyclic Trope as well, as many older people particularly in the American South have long viewed traditional Chinese art and cultural artifacts as signs of wealth and culture, a tradition with roots in the antebellum era.
    • On top of that, modern day China is a more authoritarian government whereas Japan's general image overseas is a lot more amicable towards the West, by honoring liberal democracy and the US dollar-oriented free market... making today's Japan more likable to the general Western audience. This is despite Japan is in all practical sense a single party state led by the Liberal Democratic Party and also suffers from a serious nation-wide stagflation.
    • Love of Japanese culture is often mocked on the internet as "Weeabooism", from a Memetic Mutation borne of a The Perry Bible Fellowship comic and an Imageboard word filter for "Japanophile."
    • People in countries with heavy Confucian cultural influences still express literary references towards Chinese classics. For example, chéngyǔ saying in their respective languages.
  • A certain level of Values Resonance best exemplified by the Samurai Cowboy between the American Southwest (Texas in particular) and Japanese culture has lead to something of a cultural-scale Odd Friendship and Stupid Sexy Friend form of this trope.
  • Ancient Romans were heavily influenced by Greek culture starting around the 3rd century BC, to the point of hijacking Classical Mythology entirely. Oddly enough, until the 1st century BC, any Roman publicly admitting to being interested in Greek culture was considered abnormal. Even Hadrian (2nd century AD) was made fun of for being a bit too Greek (his nickname was Graeculus, little Greek). Meaning that while there was a clear Greek influence, no Roman would be caught dead admitting it.
    • The Roman Republic and its famous army became strong in part because they borrowed ideas, tactics, and concepts from their enemies, neighbours, or wherever they could. Their famous vendetta against Carthage during the Punic Wars didn't mean they couldn't appreciate the brilliance of the Carthaginian trireme which they reverse-engineered, made their own additions (the famous Corvus bridge) and then took to the seas. The Latin historian Sallust in his The War with Catiline, quotes Julius Caesar giving an oration Lampshading this:
      Caesar: Our ancestors, Fathers of the Senate, were never lacking either in wisdom or courage, and yet pride did not keep them from adopting foreign institutions, provided they were honorable. They took their offensive and defensive weapons from the Samnites, the badges of their magistrates for the most part from the Etruscans. In fine, whatever they found suitable among allies or foes, they put in practice at home with the greatest enthusiasm, preferring to imitate rather than envy the successful.
    • Roman historian Tacitus in his Germania describes the Suebian knot, a hairstyle worn by certain tribes. He also remarks that it was somewhat in vogue amongst young Roman men. Even two thousand years ago, the older generation was rolling its eyes at the younger's adopting foreign ways. It gets even funnier when you realize that he's basically describing the man-bun.
    • The Romans and the Chinese never quite met, but they were vaguely aware of each other due to Silk Road intermediaries (particularly the Parthians, who shrewdly took advantage of their position to make sure that Rome and China never came in direct contactnote ) and had very positive impressions of each other. Chinese silk was so huge in the Roman Empire that the Roman name for China was "Seres", meaning "the place where silk comes from", and what little they knew of China they liked. The Chinese, for their part, considered Rome a rough Western equivalent of China, calling it Daqin, meaning Great China, and particularly loved Roman glass beads.
  • Rome had many admirers in the Ancient world for its organization and efficiency in administration, war and law including Greeks like Strabo and Polybius. So much so that the people of the East still clung to their identity as Romans after the fall of the original Latin part of the Empire.
  • The Greeks themselves had a thing for Ancient Egypt and Phoenicia, borrowing their math, science, philosophy, religion, writing and some customs. Of the customs, probably the most significant is the Athenian City Dionysia — a state-supported festival involving plays, music, and wine for everyone — which was probably inspired by a similar Egyptian festival dedicated to Osiris (both Dionysos and Osiris were fertility/agriculture-related gods dismembered, reassembled, and brought back to life). The Egyptian festival featured a reenactment of the Osiris dismemberment myth, and probably the first plays at the Dionysia were tellings of the equivalent tale of Dionysos; Dionysos was also associated with goats, and this story, according to Aristotle, was called tragōidia — "Song of the he-goat" — from which we get "Tragedy". Both festivals also involved participants waggling sculpted phalluses in commemoration of the dismemberment (Osiris' member was replaced by a wooden one, as a fish ate it; Dionysos was of course a fertility god and also "the party god," so the association with phalluses came naturally).
    • The Greeks loved Egypt so much that eventually the Pharaoh set aside a city-sized chunk of land for them to build the colony of Naucratis on.
    • Egypt itself was seized by Alexander and became Greek as time went on. It remained one of the bastions of Hellenism for centuries and its capital (one of the numerous Alexandrias, the only one that really endured under the namenote ) was a beacon of civilization.
    • Some scholars have posited that the tragedy of Oedipus Rex was lifted wholesale from an earlier Egyptian version. It would definitely explain things such as Oedipus becoming King of Thebes (the Greek city being named after the old Egyptian capital) and fighting a Sphinx.
  • Ancient Egypt is still heavily revered today by some groups. Hoteps, a black supremacist subculture, believe that Ancient Egypt was 100% black, and that they're descended from the kings and pharaohs of that age. They also believe that modern Egyptians are not native and come from the invaders. On the flip side, some white supremacist groups also like to claim Ancient Egypt for their own and believe that Ancient Egyptians were all white and had zero relation to the rest of Africa. Actual Egyptians living in Egypt get very annoyed by all of this, and like to point out that (1) the ancient Egyptians' paintings and (painted) sculptures pretty clearly depict themselves as brown, with pains taken to distinguish themselves from both darker-skinned Nubians and other sub-Saharan Africans on one hand and from lighter-skinned peoples like the Greeks and Semites on the other; (2) modern Egyptians are mostly pretty similar-looking to those paintings and especially those statutes both in skin color and physiognomy;note  and (3) both ancient and modern Egypt were/are moderately diverse in terms of "race", with individuals being recorded across a wide range of shades from quite dark-skinned to quite fair. As to point (3) in particular, two of the greatest and most famous kings of the New Kingdom provide good examples: Amenhotep III is commonly portrayed with some African features, which tracks with strong suggestions that his mother, Mutnofret, was of Nubian origin, while Ramses II is known from his mummy to have been a relatively fair-skinned redhead, which tracks with strong suggestions that his family, which originated in the eastern part of the Nile Delta, had some roots among foreigners from Southwest Asia or perhaps even Europe.note 
  • Many civilizations from South Asia, Central Asia, and the eastern Arab world have affinity for anything Persian. The fact that the caliphate which had the most profound impact, the Abbasids, was founded by a Persianized Arab helped. The earliest Central Asian Muslim states were so obsessed with Persian culture, a great number of their indigenous people became Persians themselves.
    • This has mostly to do with the fact that Iran has been a great civilization since a long time ago (c. 600 BCE), so naturally most of its younger neighbors admire it. As noted by Sir Muhammad Iqbal, the comparison between Arabs and Persians can be likened to the Romans and Greeks: the Arabs gave the Muslims territory, the Persians gave them culture.
    • The fetish actually dates back to Older Than Feudalism: Alexander the Great had a deep respect for Iran and considered himself successor of Cyrus the Great. After he conquered the Achaemenids, he pursued the adoption of Persian customs in his empire, to the anger of his Greek advisers. The Seleucid part of his empire was de facto Iranian.
    • For centuries, Persian was a sanctioned language of every Muslim dynasties in the region. It's often used in artistic works, hence why the great majority of poems from the Islamic Golden Age are written in Persian. The Ottoman Empire still admired Iran even though its perennial archenemy was the Iranian dynasty of the Safavids. The Ottoman Turkish language is basically Persian with a few Turkish vocabulary sprinkled here and there. Even the Christian world has an example. Armenian is so heavily influenced by Parthian (an extinct language in Northwest Iran), it was considered an Iranian language until the 20th century.
    • The fetish continues with Pakistan. Its national anthem is almost all in Persian and has only a single syllable that is exclusively Hindustani.
      • The national language of Pakistan, Urdu, also developed from a heavily persified version of Hindustani from the time of the Mughals.
  • Parts of Southeast Asia are heavily influenced by ancient and medieval Indian culture, to the point that some of them have Buddhism as their national religion. For example, the Ramayana is a popular part of local folklore in various Southeast Asian cultures, from Thailand (where it is known as the Ramakien), to Indonesia (as the Kakawin Ramayana), to Cambodia (as the Reamker), to the Maranao people of the Philippines (as the Maharadia Lawana), to Myanmar (as the Yama Zatdaw); each version may have several differences from the original Indian version or each other.
  • One real life issue resulting from this trope is that tourists visiting famous places often experience a combination of culture shock and shattering of their idealized fantasy that leaves them feeling persecuted and devastated to the point of clinical depression. This is so common that a psychological condition called "Paris Syndrome" has been coined, named for the particular frequency of the effect in those from places where France is heavily romanticized like East Asia facing the reality of a historic and lovely but ultimately mundane city. Other places that tend to trigger the effect include Rome, London, New York, and Jerusalem.
  • While having a strong cultural identity of its own, Japan rivals the US in terms of fascination with and adoption of elements of other cultures.
    • Historically, many cultural traits were imported from China, most notably their writing systems (kanji literally means "Chinese characters") and Chinese Buddhism, which was fused together with the indigenous Shinto religion.
    • America and Britain are major targets of this today, Gratuitous English being one of the more prominent forms, other highly popular cultures include France and Italy.
    • A lot of Japanese niches, such as Lolita Fashion, explore and experiment with styles and art forms from European history, such as Baroque or Victorian styles, much more than Westerners are interested in nowadays. Though often these do fall towards the fetishistic side — abuse of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland motifs, for one — a lot of art and design is created that, while based on Western forms, can only be found in Japan.
    • Quite a bit of Japanese money goes toward foriegn culture in oddly productive ways, as well: for example, many arts programs in other nations recieve grants from Japanese benefactors, and a research center near Peru's famous Nazca Lines, was built and is maintained by Japanese citizens.
    • Germany and Prussia were major influences as they were the dominant power when Japan was modernising — this is why their parliament is still called the Diet.
    • During the Meiji period the government encouraged adoption of parts of Western culture/society and technology in hopes of "catching up" to the Western powers, both economically and militarily (to some factions, as a means to an end — being able to kick out the Westerners). However, while the government had a somewhat set idea for how to go about this — "Western technology, Japanese Spirit" was the motto — some civilians and government/military officers alike would end up favoring particular, unintended aspects of the countries they went to or heard about.
  • Before modern times, Koreans were fond of all things China to the point of calling itself the "Small Middle Kingdom" compared to the Middle Kingdom that is China. These affections were generally only reserved for the Dynasties founded by Han Chinese, and the Conquest Dynasties like Yuan and Qing were viewed with contempt and accusations of savagery, which after some century of assimilation turned into a form of respect.
    • Modern day South Koreans have a thing for the United States: Japan's surrender to the Allied Powers at the end of World War II was the big linchpin in Korea reclaiming independence after 35 years of Japanese occupation, and this combined with the US's support for South Korea during The Korean War and a hearty dose of America Won World War IInote  ensures that America remains one of the country's closest military allies to this day. As such, a lot of South Koreans wish to visit the country and enjoy its culture. British culture also has its fans in the peninsula. Specifically, Koreans seem to really be into Victorian England, or at least a romanticized, idealized depiction of it, as well as high-society France at the time. A lot of bakeries popped up in response, with fancy-sounding exotic names like Tous Les Jours.
  • During The High Middle Ages, and again during the Grand Siècle (i.e. the 17th century) there was a French fashion, in which all true courtliness was done according to the manner of the French court and, if possible, in the French language.
    • Where Britain and The High Middle Ages are concerned, it might be slightly related to the fact that the entirety of the British nobility and upper-class was ethnically and culturally French. For other reasons (mainly being the most constituted nation of the bunch), same effects were experienced in Northern Spain, Northern Italy and Western Germany (notwithstanding that the whole West of the Holy Roman Empire was made of modern Eastern France at that time).
  • In the 18th century, there was a Turkish fad (some of you may remember it from Amadeus).
  • The Renaissance went through a Greco-Roman fad, various facets of which repeated throughout the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. Notable instances include the Augustan fad of the 1730-1770 period, the Neoclassicism of the 1820s, and the Greek Revival of the 1880s. Romanticism began as a sort of Hype Backlash against the Augustan period.
    • Giambattista Vico in his The New Science and more recently, German philosopher Oswald Spengler stated that westerners essentially have this trope for the classical Greco-Roman civilization, which is more different from us than many of us think. Our theater actors don't wear buskins and masks, and there's usually no chorus either, Deus ex Machina looks too much like Ass Pull to us, and our countries aren't governed by two consuls sharing the power, and there aren't annual elections for them either. Vico also pointed out that Ancient Romans had a moral system entirely alien to modern society (i.e. of the 1700s) and that the institutions founded by the Romans should be seen in context rather than copied wholesale to the present.
    • British statesman Lord Chesterfield mentioned this in his Letters to His Son: "I was not without thoughts of wearing the 'toga virilis' of the Romans, instead of the vulgar and illiberal dress of the moderns" (letter 149)
    • You'll notice The American Revolution took place during this time. Several of America's Founding Fathers, particularly Thomas Jefferson, were fond of The Roman Republic. Note how the upper house of the U.S. Congress and of the states' legislatures are called "the Senate" and then there's the abundance of Greco-Roman architecture in Washington, D.C. and the state capitals. Also, part of the reason the bald eagle was chosen as the new country's symbol was apparently because the Romans had a thing about eagles. However, the Founding Fathers were not fond of The Roman Empire and hoped that enough checks and balances would prevent the United States from emulating Rome's eventual slide into dictatorship.
    • The French Revolution was quite fascinated by Ancient Rome as well, especially the Republican era. They also liked Sparta and Athens as a whole. Brutus, both the founder of the republic and his notorious descendant, were regarded as heroes and during Dechristianization, men were given names like Gracchus, Spartacus, or Marius. A lot of the revolutionary costumes, most famously the Red Phrygian cap of the sans-culottes and other accessories was part of the classical revival as were some of the more revealing female fashion trends, the Incroyables and the Merveilleuses, during the Directory Period of France. One of the manifestations of this "classical revival" was the renaming of most "daughter-republics", i. e. the republics founded in territories occupied by the French armies, using geographic names from Roman times.note 
    • There's an old czarist tradition whereby Moscow is claimed as "the third Rome". The idea is that the center of the Christian church began in Rome and (if you're an Eastern Orthodox believer) moved to Constantinople ("the second Rome"). Then, after Constantinople fell to the Muslim Turks, the Eastern Orthodox Church moved its headquarters to Moscow ("the third Rome"). Thus, Russia claims itself as the spiritual successor to the Roman Empire by way of the Byzantine Empire, which was semi-justified as their imperial family has ties to the Byzantine ones. (Never mind that literally every other royal family of Europe can also trace ancestry to Byzantine emperors...)note  Obviously, this idea was out of favor under the atheistic Soviet Union, but it's seen a resurgence in Putin's Russia and has become a big part of Russian nationalist rhetoric.
    • It's very common for Western powers to start viewing themselves as modern-day Roman Empires. Napoléon Bonaparte saw his empire as a recreation of the Roman Empire and copied its symbols (such as the Eagle standard) for his armies. Adolf Hitler got the Nazi salute from Benito Mussolini, who got it from the Roman salute. Plus, in Hitler's view of history, the "First Reich" was the Holy Roman Empire, which unsurprisingly claimed itself as a new version of the regular Roman Empire.note 
  • There were a number of Scottish fads in 19th century England. The first was the fad of the 1820s-30s kicked off by Sir Walter Scott (about which see elsewhere on this page); another fad was in the 1870s-80s, possibly triggered by how much time the Queen spent there after Prince Albert died (Balmoral Castle had been Albert's personal project before his passing).
  • After Napoleon's Battle of the Nile, there was an Egyptian fad, which was repeated in the 1920s after the discovery of King Tut's tomb. Napoleon's invasion led to the discovery of the Rosetta Stone which was later deciphered by the French Egyptologist Champollion. French interest in Egypt eventually led to an Obelisk from Luxor being purchased by the French government and then placed at the Place de la Concorde.
  • Around late 1700s to the 1850s there was also a massive craze in Europe for Chinese-style (Chinoiserie) art and especially porcelain.
  • Dano-Norwegian playwright Ludvig Holberg (18th century Denmark) nailed the trope in a little poem, roughly translated like this:
  • Ludwig II of Bavaria had a thing for pre-Revolution era France.
  • Ludwig's grandfather, Ludwig I, had a thing for Ancient Greece, which is why the German spelling of "Bavaria" was changed from Baiern to Bayern.
  • Catherine the Great's son, Russian Emperor Pavel, was a great admirer of Prussia, just like his (probablynote ) father Peter III, to the point of returning to Prussia all the lands conquered by his mother. This definitely didn't endear him to his population and especially his courtiers, especially given what a jerk he was about it, and directly led to his assassination a couple years later.
    • As for Peter himself, he not only had Russia change from being enemies to allies of Prussia during the Seven Years' War, he also had a habit of wearing Prussian military uniforms to formal events. He blundered so badly in this that his wife, Catherine, was able to pull off a bloodless coup to oust him.
  • The USSR and the Soviet Union had a huge vogue in the 20s and 30s, and retained considerable prestige even in the 40s and 50s among several intellectuals in the Anglo-American world. The communists were also widely respected in the "Third World" until the 80s. This was related chiefly to the great intellectual respect commanded by Lenin, the creative explosion of Soviet Art in the 1920s (chiefly Sergei Eisenstein's The Battleship Potemkin), the apparent economic strength of Soviet Russia in the 1930s compared with the West in The Great Depression, the memory of the Red Army's importance in winning the World War II and the launch of Sputnik.
    • African-American Communist Paul Robeson, in post WWII US, firmly believed everything was better in the USSR, including the treatment of minorities. Destalinization was a big blow to his reputation and prestige though he remained widely admired by the African-American community who, understandably, were far less partisan on the Cold War debate. Communism was in theory an anti-racist and anti-colonialist ideology, since it argued that class was the true root of all bigotry, and Stalin occasionally exploited this to score propaganda points note  On the plus side, he sang many Russian and Soviet songs in English, including the Soviet State Anthem among others.
    • Ironically by the time of the 50s and 60s, the USSR itself had lost considerable prestige among former allies. The Cubans, namely Che Guevara, felt that the Soviet Union was backsliding and becoming too comfortable for its own good. Destalinization alienated Mao Zedong in China, while the Vietnamese always saw their Communism as rooted in local and nationalistic interest rather than the international vision of the Soviets. By the time of The '60s, Western intellectuals were more interested in Che Guevara and Ho Chi Minh than Kruschev and other internal struggles. In France, during May '68, a number of young French leftists became fond of Mao and glorified the Cultural Revolution, much to their later regret.
    • And at about the same time the USSR became an avid consumer of the works of communists living in capitalist/third world countries. Quite simply, the government enforcement of the "Socialist Realist" genre in all forms of artistic expression meant to genre had been more than played out by the time the sixties rolled around. The government thought that the works of foreign communist was close enough to propaganda and the people got a look at foreign cultures.
      • And during the eighties the Soviet populace could not get enough of American works and culture, newly available through Gorbachev’s reforms. In hindsight, when an entire generation of Soviet teenagers started wearing jeans was when the Soviet Union was doomed.
  • The French pirate Jean Lafitte was an enormous supporter of America and American patriotism, so much so that he ordered that his men attempt no sackings of American vessels when they came upon them. However, his patriotism did little to help the US government overlook his crimes, as even when he attempted to warn them that the British were planning an attack on one of their military outposts, they instead sent their troops to capture his base of operations. He was at least offered a pardon in exchange for his help in the final battle against the British in the War of 1812.
  • Friedrich Nietzsche was very fond of French, Russian, and Classical Greek cultures, and considered them superior to his own German culture and based a fair amount of his philosophy on this. Towards the end of his (sane) life, he began to emphasize his Polish roots, to the point where he would sometimes deny that he was German at all and insist that he was entirely Polish. (As Poles were second-class citizens in Imperial Germany, he may have just been trying to annoy people.)
    • Rather tragic Misaimed Fandom aside, he also had a deep appreciation for European Jewish philosophy and traditions though he likely would have balked at calling them a foreign culture.
  • Quite a few Estonians liked German culture in the late 19th century and tried to imitate it. They were called Juniper Germans (Kadakasakslased). This led to some odd things, like the Kalevipoeg—the Estonian national epic—being written by a fellow named Friedrich Reinhold Kreutzwald.
    • Similarly, north from Estonia, Finland also fell in love with Germany during the early stages of Finnish nationalism, to the point that the newly independent Finland was supposed to become a monarchy, with a German prince as the new king. The end of the First World War cut those plans short. This allegiance to Germany came back to play in the Second World War.
  • The British have had their own history of fads:
    • There's always been a love-hate relationship between England and France. Between the Norman Conquest and The Hundred Years War, every English king spoke French as a first language and in court. Indeed the Hundred Years War broke out because the English felt that their claim to the French throne was being denied by French snobbishness (True). Even after, fluency in French was an expected mark of the nobility, gentry, and educated classes right up until the early 20th century, while dialects of French were widely spoken in Jersey and Guernsey well into the 20th century, both of which are still in use (to an extent, though monolingual 'Jerriais' speaking students were entering schools up to the early 1970s), and various forms of French are used in the UK's legal documentation and ceremonially in the Houses of Parliament. French writers and philosophers such as Montaigne, Descartes, Rousseau, Voltaire right until Sartre in the 20th century were highly influential on English writers and intellectuals and the English likewise tried to keep up with French fashion and trends (truth be told, they still do, they just don't like to admit it). Even now, French is the most widely spoken/understood language in the UK after English, with nearly a quarter of the population speaking/understanding it, and the default choice for a foreign language (including the royals, though that might also have something to do with trying to stay on Canada's good side).
    • During The Renaissance and the Romantic movement, the English had a huge crush on Italian culture, ancient and early-modern. Italian poets like Petrarch were translated into English by courtiers and the Petrarchan sonnet form greatly inspired the Elizabethan Golden Age. Many plays by Shakespeare, Marlowe and Webster were set in Italianate settings because the English public saw them as exotic and civilized. Latin writers like Seneca, Virgil and Ovid also inspired many dramatists of this generation, while Italian intellectuals like Giordano Bruno and Niccolò Machiavelli were highly influential. During the Romantic movement, the likes of Percy Shelley, Lord Byron and John Keats spent years in Italy and Rome (both Keats and Shelley died in Italy) with their poetry having heavy Nostalgia Filter for both the Roman and Renaissance eras.
    • During the Romantic/Victorian era, the English public developed a fad for "regional" cultures such as Wales and Scotland, especially after Queen Victoria and Prince Albert became besotted with Scotland and started the tradition of British Royals spending part of the year in Balmoral. This was exploited by writers Robert Burns, Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson. Historically this was still a raw period when Scotland only recently incorporated itself into Great Britain, and the memories of the Jacobite Rebellion were still fresh, so one can see this as a form of assimilation. It was during this time traditions about Scotland were "invented" (in historian Eric Hobsbawm's phrase) such as "tartan pattern" and the like. Walter Scott famously called Scotland "A costume and not a people" and essentially propagated all kinds of invented Scottish traditions that defined it in the imagination of English and European audiences. Ireland which refused to assimilate itself to Great Britain became a fad in the early 20th Century, thanks to its own writers: James Joyce, W. B. Yeats, Flann O'Brien and many others.
    • As a result of colonialism, the English developed fads for the cultures of conquered lands, whether in India, Egypt, Africa and Australia. Tropes like Mighty Whitey, the Great White Hunter and Adventure Archaeologist date from the fiction of this era, chiefly the works of Rudyard Kipling and H. Rider Haggard. Later writers like Joseph Conrad and E. M. Forster would deal with the same tropes in a more critical and darker light.
    • In Victorian Britain, German romanticism was highly popular. The works of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Schiller, Lessing, as well as the music of Beethoven and Mozart were hugely popular and influential. Towards the late Victorian and early Edwardian period, the English literati and reading public also became fascinated by Russian literature and several authors like Ivan Turgenev, Leo Tolstoy, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Nikolai Gogol, Anton Chekhov and Alexander Pushkin became highly popular and influential.
    • American culture was initially more popular in the Continent than within Britain. Even Charles Dickens who was highly popular in America, got mileage out of making fun of American culture and society in his novel Martin Chuzzlewit and his American Notes. It was only at the end of the Victorian Age, thanks to the popularity of Walt Whitman (more liked in England than in America in this time), Mark Twain, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, that the English finally admitted that they liked America after all. Even today, British people, even those critical of its politics, love America and couldn't live without the culture. The British Invasion was inspired by American rock and roll and Blues Music, and the Comics invasion of the 80s (Alan Moore and Co.) was also inspired by their love of American comicsnote 
  • The United States, being a large Melting Pot, has had a history of interest with all kinds of different European and Asian cultures.
  • Since the times of Peter the Great, Russia has developed a French fad, being obsessed with their culture to the point that some of the nobles didn't even know how to speak Russian, opting to use French as their preferred language. This is described in detail in War and Peace, where Tolstoy included tons of untranslated French, and characters adored everything connected to France, such as Prince Andrei idolizing Napoleon. Of course, after the Napoleonic Wars this fad slowly faded away, with Russian conservatism deprecating French ideas of liberty which was more closely associated with revolutionaries, who idolized French Republican and Socialist ideas from the Decembrist Uprising to Red October (whose first anthems were modeled on La marseillaise and who placed a flag of the Paris Commune in the Kremlin). The USSR were generally on good terms on with French culture and French cinema.
  • Australia has (had) a very strong Anglophile streak, lessening in the 1970s to be replaced by America, though that's more of a conflicted fandom. Australia itself was on the receiving end of this by Americans through the 80s with movies like "Crocodile" Dundee popularizing the Awesome Aussie trope.
  • Hungary had a hard-on for anything that was not Russian while the Iron Curtain was up. Then, after 1989 the foreign stuff started pouring in, and throughout The '90s people were going crazy for literally anything that came from west of the border. This eventually led to the development of an ultra-nationalistic cultural (and political) movement around the turn of the millennium.
    • This is typical of most post-East Bloc countries in general, but Hungary's case is somewhat special in that under the so-called "goulash communism" instated in the 1960s, the Hungarian economy was the most open to the West within the Bloc (which isn't saying much; even Yugoslavia—which had a similar economic system necessitating some trade controls but was neutral in the Cold War and thus not part of the Eastern Bloc—saw far more trade with the West than Hungary).
    • In the Eastern Bloc in general, due to constant economic shortages and lower living standards, anything from the West (consumer goods, culture etc.) was seen as better, more durable and shinier.
  • A very touchy example was the glorification of all things Africa by black Americans (mostly in the early to mid-nineties), which was particularly odd as most of whom are not seen as "fellow Africans" by people currently living on that continent, but are rather viewed as simply Americans with a darker skin color.
    • Especially odd was the use of Swahili by such groups, as it is an East African language that none of the West African slaves would have understood or even heard of. They actually spoke a wide variety of tongues — Fon, Wolof, Yoruba, Ibo, Fula, etc., but virtually none would have spoken Swahili.
  • This trope also tends to occur whenever white people dare to turn a popular aspect of black culture into something Totally Radical. Note the amount of rock acts in the late 90s/early 2000s that tried to marry their genre with rap, or cringe-worthy commercials where a "hip grandma" or culturally sensitive college kid would say things like "that's da bomb" or "that's tight" with a straight face.
  • "Eastern" Spirituality in so many of its glorious forms is really a Western imagination of something deemed excitingly exotic, peaceful and, well, "spiritual", and most of all, full of opportunities to escape one's dull life.
    • It doesn't help that the New Age movement (which is not exclusively Eastern) has gotten so tangled up with what the west considers Eastern mysticism.
    • The mangled "Eastern" Spirituality can be detected in the differing views on reincarnation: Westerners view it as a way to return to the world and have a better new life, whereas Easterners view it as a negative cycle that must be broken. There's a reason for this, as reincarnation isn't an "Eastern" concept as such: there were culturally Western faiths with a belief in reincarnation (for example, a Pythagorean mysticism) which indeed espoused such views.
    • Additionally, most Westerners who accept Buddhism do so because it fits their atheism/agnosticism and Scientific Rationalism. They tend to strip all the supernatural and ceremonial elements out of Buddhism and declare it a philosophy, or say it's something other than a religion. They view traditional Eastern practice of Buddhism as a perversion of Buddha's message, and that Asian cultures have been doing it all wrong. Go over to the discussion section of The Other Wiki's article on Buddhism, and you will see a 5+ year argument over the definition of Buddhism. Those who favor describing it as a religion tend to come from Asian cultures (they even cite their own language's wiki).
    • The website Stuff White People Like notes that the Asian religions liked by Westerners are usually the opposite of what they grew up with and religions that don't have much restrictions (which is why Islam, which is not unlike Christianity in basic doctrine and morals, is not a common religion for Westerners to convert to).
    • Christianity itself is a Middle Eastern religion which caught on with the Romans for, come to think of it, the same reasons today's Westerners buy into eastern spirituality.
  • The bizarre Israeli-fetish found in some strains of American Christian fundamentalism, and the appropriation of Jewish symbolism found in some Christian groups, to the point where some Evangelical Christians even celebrate Passover. (Yes, they worship a Jewish man who celebrated Passover for his Last Supper. Still…) It comes off as both philo-Semitic and antisemitic at the same time. It gets more than a little freaky when you find out a chunk of that fundamentalist population loves Israel because they think the unification of the Holy Land and the rebuilding of the Temple Mount are necessary for Christ to come again... and they don't really seem to care about what happens to the Jews after that.
    • This fetish also makes many of them as rabid as the most extreme right-wing Israelis (with the added bonus of being thousands of miles away from the practical results of their proposed policies) and blithely indifferent to what happens to the Palestinians. The real life complexities of the situation don't really interest them at all; whoever gets in the way of the Holy Land being under complete Israeli control is the enemy of God, to be crushed or swept aside without mercy. In this, they actually agree with the craziest of the crazy of Israel, the ultra-right-wing Religious Zionists, who tend to be Orthodoxnote  Jews as well as far-right wingers politically aiming for the "redemption" of the Land of Israel: it's the same thing, it's just that the Jewish ones are hoping for an unknown Messiah, whereas the Christians think they know who the Messiah is. As a result, said rabid right-wing Israelis consider them very valuable allies.
      • All this, by the way, makes things very confusing for American neo-Nazis. Should they support the left-wing party (which contains more than a few Jews) or the pro-Israel party? The rest of the right doesn't care about their plight, of course, as the neo-Nazi movement is small enough to comfortably ignore. Some members of the alt-right, despite their virulent anti-Semitism, have expressed admiration for Israel as the kind of "ethnostate" with its policies favoring Jewish people that they would like to replicate with white people elsewhere.
    • The same thing essentially happened among the some parts of the Russian far right, who chose to throw away the intense, bitter Antisemitism that was a traditional trait of the movement, and instead come as downright Zionist. This is for somewhat different reasons, though, and has mostly to do with a shift of their object of hatred towards Muslims, perception of Israelis' "raghead bashing" prowess, and a distaste towards Nazism which did a lot of horrifying things to their nation and peoples.
  • And on the other side, the more nutty sympathizers with Palestinian extremists (or Iran, or Israel's main enemy du jour) wear the Kufiya without knowing much of its background and call for "solidarity" with Hamas and other groups that — to say it politely — may not share all of their viewpoints. A Western Atheist calling for "support" or "solidarity" for Hamas one day and decrying homophobia and religious violence the next day may come off a bit strange, but then again Hamas cares just as little about that as the above-mentioned right wing Israelis care about the plans Christian Zionists have after the Messiah comes.
  • There is a small, but obsessive, fanbase for Monaco, and its lavish culture. This can largely be attributed either to the reputation of the casinos of Monte Carlo or the fact that the country's most famous princess was Grace Kelly.
  • Related to both the Monaco and Israeli fandoms is the long-standing fetishization of "Arabia" and the Bedouin culture in American movie making (the adaptation of The Sheik, which starred a Mexican-descent actor as the lord of the burning sands, and the quasi-historic Lawrence of Arabia as only two examples). In more recent years, some political factions in the USA have gained a deep affinity for Arab and Muslim culture. This has taken a particular edge in the progressive support for the Palestinian side in the on-going conflict - a support that glosses over the significant differences between progressive and fundamentalist Palestinian approaches to homosexuality, women's liberation, and to a lesser degree protection of religious minorities and religious freedomnote  among other issues. A closer correspondence to the Monaco fanbase is the new but increasing fanbase for Dubai, with its glittering towers and extreme opulence...based on a lot of exploitation of immigrants and truly abysmal human rights record, plus the glittering towers are Conspicuous Consumption writ large at best and at worst surprisingly tacky, and the whole thing is built on an economic model whose sustainability is subject to serious doubt, but world's tallest building, everyone!
  • France has a whole has a history of fetishes and fads, befitting the historical centre of fashion and trends:
    • After the Renaissance reached France during the reign of Francis I, he became enamored with all things Italy. He spent huge sums bringing Italian art and artists to Paris, including the master Leonardo da Vinci, who spent his final years there. While he didn't paint much, he brought many of his paintings with him, including The Mona Lisa.
    • During The Enlightenment, French intellectuals greatly admired England and later the United States of America for its political liberalism and scientific accomplishment. English words like "club" were imported wholesale to describe the emerging "Jacobin Club". When the Revolution broke out, and war with England was declared, this cooled considerably, especially later when Napoléon Bonaparte, who did like English culture, declared a blockade on English goods.
    • Voltaire believed in a "benevolent despot" system after visiting Prussia and becoming pen pals with Catherine the Great, though he later expressed skepticism in private. His ideal government and favorite culture was England and its politically liberal tradition as well as the tradition of English satire of Pope and Swift which greatly inspired his own works. He greatly admired English scientists such as Isaac Newton for whom he was such a Hero-Worshipper that he sought to destroy Leibniz's reputation solely to elevate that of his hero. That said, Voltaire hated Shakespeare whose violation of "classical unities" annoyed him greatly. Shakespeare would only be appreciated among Frenchmen from Victor Hugo onwards, the latter was one of the first French authors to violate "classical unities" and make that okay to do in France.
    • In the age of Napoléon Bonaparte, anti-Bonaparte exiles like Madame de Stael and Benjamin Constant were among the first to discover German romanticism and write seriously about it. Among Bonapartists, Italy was regarded with a great deal of fetish, aided undoubtedly by Napoleon's art theft of Renaissance painting and sculpture from Italy to the Louvre. Stendhal who served with Napoleon loved Italy so much that when Napoleon lost, he refused to enter France and spent the next ten years in Italy sulking and writing about Italian opera and culture. The famous "Stendhal Syndrome" was coined to describe his overwhelming love for Florence's Renaissance culture and his novel The Charterhouse of Parma is a highly romantic portrayal of Italian culture.
    • France has of course always been fascinated by America. American writers like Herman Melville, Edgar Allan Poe and H. P. Lovecraft were for a while more popular in France than the United States, and French literary critics were among the first to take genre writers like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler seriously. Likewise, Jazz and Blues which were still seen prototypically as The New Rock & Roll in America had a popular and intellectual audience in France. American movies, especially the genre films of westerns, musicals and Film Noir (a French word as it happens) was first given serious attention by the French magazine Cahiers du Cinema who were the first to write seriously on Alfred Hitchcock, Howard Hawks and many others, and were thus a huge influence on the French New Wave movement.
    • France has had a cultural obsession with Africa and Africans for going on a century now (it wanes in popularity every few decades and then comes back). Pablo Picasso (who was not French, but lived in France for a good portion of his life) famously represented it in a few of his paintings (many of those distorted faces are actually meant to be African tribal masks). They also greatly admired African-American culture, and Blues and Jazz musicians (such as Josephine Baker) is still a household name. The obsession came about through a combination of French colonialism and an influx of African American expatriates settling in Paris after each of the World Wars.
  • Brazil is a country with a cultural obsession of "mixing" with other nations — it's been a long held belief that Brazil's strength comes not from its racial purity, but from its propensity for mixing with as many races and cultures as possible, thus adopting their best traits into the larger Brazilian culture. There have been waves of cultural obsession, including Japanese, Arab, American, Portuguese, African, German, Italian, etc. At any given time in their history, the Brazilian intelligentsia has been obsessed with some nation's culture.
  • (White) America has had a long standing fascination for Native American, even through their displacement. The Boston Tea Party protesters dressed in buckskins and feathers as a symbol of their American identity. Many of them later joined the Improved Order of Red Men, a fraternal organization that still exists today.
    • In more modern times, playing "Cowboys and Indians" has been a long time kids favorite.
    • Groups as diverse as people from the military (Mohawk hairstyles for paratroopers during WWII, tomahawks carried by American soldiers in pretty much every armed conflict they've been involved in to the point that it's arguably the US National Weapon) and New age hippies (who seem to believe in the Magical Native American stereotype) seem to love wearing the culture. There's also the recent trend of feather headdresses as fashion accessories, "Indian Girl" tattoos, and "Navajo Print" flasks. This is much more likely to be a random melding of traits from a dozen different cultures spread over the continent than from one specific tribe as well, making it downright confusing to people with actual knowledge.
    • Native American imagery is also a popular source for sports mascots due to the stereotype that Native Americans are tough and savage warriors. However, following backlash against the former Washington Redskins, as well as the Cleveland Indians, there has been a growing movement for such organizations to rebrand entirely.
  • Scandinavia and the Nordic countries get a lot of this. If it's not a general fascination with Vikings and such things, it is most probably admiration of the Nordic welfare system and the "hygge" aesthetic. In the 50s and 60s, Swedish movies, especially those of Ingmar Bergman, were highly popular and successful in America and Europe. Music is also important, with some foreign Metalheads in particular, who seem to believe that the famous Black Metal and Death Metal scenes of Norway and Sweden respectively, are totally mainstream and played on pop radio. It isn't so—Remember that although Sweden produced half the forerunners of melodic death metal, it also produced ABBA. And after ABBA, Sweden has never ceased being insanely successful at (and obsessed with) the Eurovision Song Contest, which has earned them a lot of admiration and envy. Left-leaning Americans also admire the generous social safety nets and gender equality of Nordic countries.
  • Argentina has had an obsession with France since the 19th Century, starting back in the time when the Argentine bourgeoisie looked at France as the role model for the country they wanted to create (also, before 1920, the French were the largest non-Spanish European ethnic group). This becomes particularly clear when visiting Buenos Aires, as the architecture has an intensely French feel to it, while the tango is rooted in French music, which presumably helped its becoming popular in Parisian ballrooms in the early 1910s. Although the francophilia has dwindled through time (never quite dying out), the trend is still strong in the academic environment, mostly in the social sciences and humanities' colleges, which are overwhelmingly focused on French authors. Finally, as in Paris, psychoanalysis still thrives in Buenos Aires, particularly the Lacanian current.
  • Latin America used to be in love with everything American for most of the 20th century, to the point of ignoring Hollywood's peculiar vision of its culture. However, by the Cold War era, the US' interventionism in domestic matters (leading to totalitarian regimes) led to this fascination to die down in favor of "Latin-Americanism". The only part of American culture still hugely popular down south is Hollywood's blockbuster movies. Nevertheless, other aspects of US culture are popular in Peru and Colombia, which don't hold such grudges against Americans.note  In general, the US was seen as wholly positive and something worth emulating (as seen by the Ancient Grome style of government buildings from that era inspired by the Grome-tastic US representative architecture) until at least the Mexican-American War (which resulted in huge amounts of Broken Pedestal in leftist circles, especially in Mexico). While the US in general is more popular among right-wing Latin Americans than among the left wing, US popular culture and (for lack of a better term) the "American dream" have been most popular in the former Soviet satellites of the Caribbean. When Nicaragua turned into a Communist nation in the 1980s, Russian TV and books were not nearly as popular as US cowboy fare, even if they (understandably) disliked American foreign policy, as pointed out at the time by the mayor of a Vermont townexplanation . Walker, Texas Ranger is still shown on Nicaraguan TV in the 2010s. And the Communist Cuban public of all places still prefer classic American cars dating from the 1950s to more recent Soviet (and later Japanese and Korean) ones.
    • Latin Americans had also a strong admiration of Italian culture during the 20th century, particularly between the 1950s and 1980s, either because of its cars, its music, or its softcore comedies.
  • Celtic cultures, and particularly the Irish culture, have their numerous admirers, too - be it for the richness of those cultures, their fascinating histories or their La Résistance ways when dealing with the Brits. Just one very telling example: Russia, of all places, has a ton of bands playing Celtic(ish) folk music.note 
  • Nazi Germany has a significant following worldwide amongst white supremacists and anti-Semites. Of course, it's only this trope for the neo-Nazis who aren't German.
    • There's also a weird "Nazi chic" trend in some Asian countries, which is based on the aesthetics of the regime rather than its vile ideology note . Hence, there are Nazi-themed weddings in China. Its history goes back a long way. Both China and Japan had close relations with Germany since late 19th century. Nazi Germany was an ally of both Guomindang China and Imperial Japan in the 1930s, providing military aid to the former and diplomats to the latter. Although China got thrown under the bus by Hitler, it should be noted that the GMD's army still wore German-influenced uniforms until the 1950s, and used Stahlhelms for parade duty until 1946. It also probably doesn’t help that the most prominent Nazi figure the Chinese encountered was John Rabe, the "Oskar Schindler of China," who protected them from the Japanese and is currently revered as the “Living Buddha of Nanking."
    • Nazi Germany and its aesthetic have a huge vogue in some parts of India. Some of this can be traced to Subhash Chandra Bose and his Indian National Army's poorly conceived attempt to ally with Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan in an Enemy Mine against The British Empire. Others mostly see Hitler's pan-Germanic majoritarian ideology as a precedent for right-wing Hindu movements in India. The weird part comes with the Hindutva ideology which took inspiration from both Nazi Germany and Israeli Zionism. And even without the political connotations, the swastika is still considered as a positive symbol in India for ages, its Nazi version not excepted.
    • There's also something similar to the above two examples happening in America, where people get attracted to the aesthetics of Imperial Germany. This is considered by some to be a subtle "cover" for Neo-Nazis who want to express pro-German viewpoints and aesthetics publicly but without backlash, as Imperial Germany isn't nearly as vilified by history. However, not all people who are interested in Imperial Germany are Neo-Nazis, and many fittingly hate the Nazis for having brought down Germany. Even still, the fascination for all things German -including the spiked Pickelhaube helmet- tends to worry some people considering how close it comes to outright Nazi worship, or at least German nationalism. There are also some Westerners who adopt the aesthetics of the Nazi regime, even if they disavow its politics. The similarities between these people and the Occidental Otaku have given rise to the term "Wehraboo", which has a similarly negative connotation like "Weeaboo" does. And much like with Weeaboos, this fascination is not shared with the local population. Anyone going to Germany with a nationalistic mindset will be... disappointed at best, considering nationalism is very taboo in modern Germany. Admirers of Imperial Germany who aren't neo-nazis tend to prefer the term "Kaiserboo", as it refers to the emperor of Imperial Germany.
  • America seems to love anything related to India (and, by extension, Pakistan, even if they don't realize it), particularly for its "exotic" appeal, though this causes some tension on occasion when cultural traditions like the bindi are used without understanding of their significance.
  • In July 2021 British tabloid culture became facinated with Oli London, an eccentric British person who is so obsessed with Korean pop culture to the extent of feeling he is a Korean who was born into the wrong race and culture, and trying to remedy this by lots of expensive plastic surgery (£175,000 worth...) to restyle his face and skin to "Korean". If Oli eventually gets round to learning to speak Korean, he might be able to confirm what the Korean is for "otaku".
  • Inversely, during Japan's feudal times where European merchants occasionally came to visit the islands for trades, several Japanese warlords became fascinated with their culture that they started mingling with them too much and adapting their clothing style and sheltering their religious members. Two of the most famous names that are reputed to have such obsession include Oda Nobunaga and Date Masamune. Naturally, this clashes horribly against the traditionalist Japanese people who were always wary against foreigners that they considered barbaric, they saw those two with suspicion: Masamune was not trusted, more treated as a Wild Card, in addition of his wild attitude despite in the end proving to be a loyal ally to whoever he swore allegiance with; whereas Nobunaga added oil to the fire by being also pragmatically brutal and stomping those traditionalists that decried him (with those foreign otaku supplies that happened to be super effective at warfare), so much that one of his main ally who happened to be of a traditionalist mindset decided that he couldn't take it anymore and staged a betrayal that led to Nobunaga's demise at Honnoji.

Alternative Title(s): Turning Japanese