The personality of Russians is a particularly interesting subject. Russians contrast themselves with the materialistic culture of the West and define themselves in terms of spirituality and their “Russian soul.” Russian national character was explored by outstanding novelists and came to be used by historians and political scientists as part of the explanation for Russia’s history.
Every nation has its own character. It is no wonder that so much has been said and written about the mysteries of Russian soul and Russian personality. Many contemporary Russians believe that Russia has a special place in history and that Russians have unique personality traits. Our country is special in many ways. Russia is the largest country in the world with long history, and it is one of the few countries that combines characteristics of both Western and Eastern civilizations. I do not think that it is possible to “become” a true Russian if you were not born in Russia, but I think it is possible to summarize most common characteristics of Russian personality, which I am going to do now.
I agree with Karl Heinrich Marx, a German philosopher, who said that the way we live really influences and determines our personality. Most Russian people live in severe weather conditions.
To my mind, the ability of Russian people to overcome difficulties, Russian forbearance, is our most widely-known characteristic. We are patient no matter what happens; we neither despair nor lose courage under any circumstances, and we truly believe in ourselves despite all the misfortunes that might happen. In any situation a true Russian will say, “Russians do not give up”, and go on with a smile.
Another feature of a true Russian, which cannot be doubted, is greatheartedness. This is reflected in our hospitality, our generosity, even our ability to spend every ruble we have, is all the result of our great hearts.