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October 06, 2009

A Community between Two Nations: The Chinese in North Vietnam, 1954-1978

The University of Michigan Center for Southeast Asian Studies Friday-at-Noon lecture presents

Friday, October 9, 2009
"A Community between Two Nations: The Chinese in North Vietnam, 1954-1978"
Han Xiaorong, Butler University

12:00 – 1:30 pm
1636 SSWB/International Institute

Market stall in Hanoi, 2006. Photo by Ryan Hoover.

From the 1950s to the late 1970’s, when the Chinese in several other Southeast Asian nations were experiencing forced assimilation and other difficulties with local governments, the Chinese in North Vietnam were enjoying privileged treatment by the North Vietnamese government. In the late 1970s, when the Chinese in most other Southeast Asian nations had transformed from sojourners to local citizens, most Chinese in North Vietnam were forced out of the country. Prior to Vietnamese reunification in 1975, North Vietnamese leaders adopted lenient policies towards the Chinese community, mainly a reflection of the importance of their war-time relationship with China. But the state’s preferential treatment of the Chinese ultimately contributed to a delay in the assimilation of Chinese residents, who by the end of the 1970s still had not completed the transformation from sojourners to citizens. After reunification, the desire to clarify loyalty, i.e. to “purify” the nation-state, led the Vietnamese government to initiate an aggressive process of forced assimilation. This policy, and the deterioration of relations between Vietnam and China in the late 1970s, triggered an exodus of Chinese residents.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Chinese Studies

Posted by zzhu at October 6, 2009 10:54 PM