The Culture

Ancestor Worship - Architecture - Arts Music Traditional - Cao Daism - Lifestyle - Literature - Media Cinema - Government & Economy - Lacquerware ceramics - Painting Sculpture Population - Religion - Sport - The National Psyche - Theatre Puppetry - The People Of Vietnam - Women In Vietnam


As in many parts of Asia, Vietnamese women take a lot of pain for little gain, with plenty of hard work to do and little authority at the decision-making level. Vietnamese women were highly successful as guerrillas in the American War and brought plenty of grief to US soldiers- After the war , their contribuĀ­tions were given much fanfare, but all the government posts were given to men. In the countryside, you'll see women doing backbreaking jobs, such as crushing rocks at construction sites and carrying heavy baskets . It's doubtful that many Western men would be capable of such strenuous activity. The country's two-children-per-family policy is boosting the independence of Vietnamese women, and more are delaying marriage to get an education. Around 50% of university students are female, but they're not always given the same opportunity as males to shine after graduation. One of the sadder realsties of the recent opening up to the West has been the influx of pimps posing as 'ta lent scouts'. Promises of lucrative jobs in developed countries are dangled in front of naive Vietnamese women who later find themselves enslaved as prostitutes. The trafficking of poor, rural women into the sex industry in Cambodia has been a huge problem and in many cases this involves the connivance of family members sacrificing one of their daughters for the rest to survive. The Vietnamese consider pale skin to be beautiful. On sunny days, trendy Vietnamese women can often be seen strolling under the shade of an umĀ­brella in order to keep from tanning. Women who work in the fields will go to great lengths to preserve their pale skin by wrapping their faces in towels and wearing long-sleeved shirts, elbow-length silk gloves and conical hats. To tell a Vietnamese woman that she has white skin is a great compliment; telling her that she has a 'lovely suntan' is a grave insult.