Language and Customs of Traditional Marriage in some provinces in Vietnam

Author: Tong Hung Tam (Hanoi University of Natural Resources and Environment)
Speaker: Tong Hung Tam
Topic: Language socialization
The (SCOPUS / ISI) SOAS GLOCAL CALA 2019 General Session


Language and customs of traditional marriage is one the important role in Vietnamese culture. Regardless of the relationship between language and customs, many elaborate rituals have been ignored as not suitable for modern life. Most customs are much simpler but still, maintain the traditional characteristics. In that way, However, there are some obligatory wedding rituals that couples should comply with.

This study concentrates on how language and customs of traditional marriage change in some provinces in Vietnam. Besides, to discover the language value in marriage, the study continues to exploit whether it is celebrated by both Vietnamese in Vietnam and overseas, often combining both Western and Eastern elements. All of these confirm the Trends and determinants of marriage payments have rarely been examined at the population level despite their plausible implications for the welfare of family and the distribution of wealth across families and generations. In this study, we analyze population-based data from the Vietnam Study of Family Change to document prevalence and directions of marriage payments in Vietnam from 1963 to 2000.

We investigate the extent to which structural and policy transformations (particularly market reform and the socialist policy that banned brideprice) influenced the practice of marriage payments as well as estimate how societal changes indirectly impacted payments via their effects on population characteristics. Results indicate that marriage payments surged following market reform but also reveal more nuanced trends and regional differences during earlier years.

While the socialist attempts to eradicate brideprice appear to have been moderately successful in the North prior to economic renovation the evidence suggests they were largely unsuccessful in the South. Results suggest that structural and policy change explained most of the observed variations in marriage payments and that changing characteristics of the individuals who married mattered relatively little. We interpret the reemergence of marriage payments as attesting to resilience of traditional values and the unraveling of the socialist agenda, especially in the North, but also as a reflection of economic prosperity associated with market reform.

Keywords: Marriage payments, Brideprice, dowry, Vietnam, Thai and Muong