It seems to me that society adopts stereotypes on purpose – not going into any detail and therefore make life easier. Stereotypes themselves have a certain summary, which are used to describe specific types of individuals or certain ways of doing things.
For instance, if you ask a foreigner what he knows about Great Britain, 99% of answers would be the Queen, Big Ben, 5 o’clock tea and the rainy weather. In the same situation I doubt that British people say the same things due to their knowledge, understanding and personal associations with their Motherland.
The same situation exits with Russians. If you ask me what comes to my mind when we talk about Russia, I would say anything except vodka, bears, frost, the KGB or whatever Europeans have to say about it. Russia is more than that.