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The Xenophobe's Guide to the Swiss

(The Xenophobe's Guide)

by
3.72  ·  Rating details ·  257 ratings  ·  37 reviews
Xenophobia: An irrational fear of foreigners. Xenophobe's Guides: Small books that show the more you know the less you fear. Xenophobe's motto: Forewarned is forearmed. ...more
Paperback, 64 pages
Published September 28th 1996 by Ravette Publishing (first published January 1st 1996)
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Average rating 3.72  · 
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Meri
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read the Guide to the Scots first, and thank goodness I did. If I had read the a Guide to the Swiss first, I wouldn't have been reading any of the other Xenophobe Guides. This was a shallow compendium of stereotypes which barely scratched the surface of who the Swiss are. Yes, they have money. Yes, they make a lot of chocolate. Did the author even have to go to Switzerland to write this? The Scots one was so good I will keep reading the others, but if you're looking for a guide to Swiss people ...more
Rob
Jan 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: countries, culture
Like with all The Xenophobe's Guides is well structured and covers as much as in 96 pages is possible. Is enough to give you an educated (some might say biased) introduction to other cultures. I dont know any Swiss people so I take for granted the author and the review frm others ...more
Inez Moutarde
Jan 30, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have lived as an Expat in Switzerland for nearly 5 years. Every little bit about this book is hysterically true. I wish I read it when I first arrived here.

Alberto
Nov 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
quite an entertaining and informative book about the Swiss culture
Rebecca
Told with a sense of humor, it isn't entirely true, but only because not explaining some things in detail leaves room for humor. I enjoyed it, and it was entertaining. Great way to learn about Swiss culture without dying of boredom. ...more
Daisy
Oct 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An informative yet hilarious novel which aims to delve inside even the smallest bizarre traits that, before this novel, have managed to baffle foreigners for millennia. It was a delight to read, providing an amusing 'idiot's guide' to traits common to an entire nation. ...more
Margaret Clark
Quick, enjoyable read. My husband and I read it out loud and were quite entertained. Some parts of it were spot-on, other parts (I felt) were way off. The author is British and lives in the Oberland, so perhaps his experience has been different than mine (an American who moved to Zurich).
David
Jan 06, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Passed on to me by a friend born in Switzerland. When returning it, I will be sure to note the author's description of Swiss of German descent as "somewhat sedated Germans." ...more
Gregor
Jan 31, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Moh.
Linda Grimm
Jun 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amusing read

Amusing read

For anyone heading to Switzerland _ this should be required reading. The book has good information, presented in a humorous style!
Christopher
Short, lively, sarcastic and extremely readable. This book has made me even more enthusiastic about my upcoming trip to Switzerland.
Julia Pogodina
Jul 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books in the series.
James Dalziel
Oct 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am hooked on this series. In the words of Homer Simpson, "they are funny, because they are true". ...more
Alicia Fox
Nov 08, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Would have been useful before visiting the country. Easily read in half an hour.
Wilmington
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: culture-shock
I have read most of the books in the series about Western Europe, and I agree with other reviewers that this one is among the best, along with those about England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland (the publisher's home turf). My only criticism is that the author doesn't seem to know well enough other European countries and often describes as typically Swiss things that are in fact exactly the same in other Germanic countries or even in France. This is the case of recycling (p.29-30), disposable fees ...more
Herrholz Paul
Being half Swiss and having lived there myself for seven years, this book was at times uncomfortably real in its depictions of the Swiss and the author has done a good job. It made me both laugh and cringe. I was surprised to see that there is no mention of the Swiss obsession with sweeping up leaves in the Autumn! This has to be one of their main obsessions - a real stress buster. And naturally this important work is undertaken with a traditional `Bese` (broom). At this time of year can be hear ...more
Melissa
Slightly insulting title aside, I found this book to be funny and informative for learning about Swiss culture and practices. It felt less "though shalt do this" and more "this is a thing, it may be a bit strange to your American sensibilities, but roll with it". I enjoy that it didn't take itself too seriously, but was informative nonetheless. I will be checking out more from this series as I expand my travels. ...more
De.B. Dubois
Aug 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sociology
This book is perhaps the most humorous way of putting tacit facts about the average Swiss straight on our Swiss-face. If there’s anything at all, that can put a nation and its nationals on stage with “diplomatic humour”, this is it!
Mel
Dec 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nice overview.
Dave
Apr 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
These books are always caricatures, but this makes Switzerland sound like both a wonderful and terrrible place to live.
Leanne
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Short, humorous and informative. Loved it.
Nicki Fruth
May 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this with Swiss friends who have become like family. Man did we have a laugh. Would recommend :).
Robin Bunbury
Some of it is very true, some of it is not.
Written in a very humours way, that's why I like to read the Xenophobe guides once in a while :3
...more
Jenny
Feb 17, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: swiss
Unfortunately there is a lot of false information in this one, very disappointing. Basically a list of stereotypes. Some things I even found a little offending. Would recommend Diccon Bewes Swiss Watching: Inside Europe's Landlocked Island instead, which was true and very funny. ...more
Gabriele
Jan 14, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Given to me when I moved to Switzerland in 2000. I laughed out loud when reading it on the plane and people kept glancing at me. The best of teh Xenophobe's series ...more
Vladimir
Jan 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Mostly true, quite amusing.
Lisibo
Jan 31, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very funny! Taking it all with a pinch of salt obviously!
Kiddonne
Mar 14, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
still enjoying this series, even though it lost its novelty ;)
Olivia
Jan 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Light and easy read. As a Swiss I have to admit that this book is pretty accurate. And made me smile quite a few times.
Ipswichblade
Decent enough short book about switzerland
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The Xenophobe's Guide (1 - 10 of 35 books)
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  • Xenophobe's Guide to the Americans
  • The Xenophobe's Guide to the Aussies
  • Xenophobe's Guide to the Austrians
  • The Xenophobe's Guide to the Belgians
  • The Xenophobe's Guide to the Brazilians (Xenophobe's Guides)
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