Vietnam is increasingly opening up to the West, and society is in flux between tradition and modernity, and capitalism and socialism. Americans have distanced themselves from the Vietnam War now, and Culture and Customs of Vietnam fills a need to learn about the country, which has also evolved. Readers will find that this is the only general book on Vietnamese culture in English written by specialists. McLeod and Nguyen, historians specializing in Vietnam engagingly show the various forces of Vietnamese culture in narrative chapters on the land, people, and language; history and institutions; thought and religion; literature; art and architecture; cuisine; family, marriage, gender, and youth culture; festivals and leisure activities, and performing arts. Culture and Customs of Vietnam is a comprehensive, one-stop source, providing the most useful and intriguing information for students and general readers. Some of the highlights include the discussion of the Chinese influence in writing, thought, and religion; eating habits; the changing family; and water puppetry. A chronology, glossary, and numerous photos complement the text.
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