Culture Acculturation & Development

For nearly two thousand years, Vietnam came under the influence of Chinese culture, while at the same time continuing cultural exchange with India and the neighboring peoples of Southeast Asia. These neighbors were acculturating Indian influence, except for those in what is presently southern China. The latter had been completely sanitized.

However great the Chinese impact may have been, the Viet succeeded in preserving their Southeast Asian cultural identity, which their integration into the Chinese cultural orbit enriched with contributions from East Asia.

The material culture and language of the Vietnamese are a mixture of the two cultural zones, whereas the administration, education, and scholarly literature carry the Chinese imprint. The hold of Chinese culture was marked in two different ways during the course of two long historical periods: it was imposed during the millennium-long occupation and sought after by the Vietnamese themselves during the nine subsequent centuries of national independence.

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