Vietnamese Culture Promoted in Taiwan

Over the years, the Vietnamese community in Taiwan has made great efforts in teaching Vietnamese, organizing traditional festivals, and introducing the image of Vietnam to Taiwanese friends.
August 19, 2022 | 06:19

Vietnamese language connects Vietnamese culture with Taiwan

As the second generation born and raised in Taipei, Taiwan, Pham My Dung's two children, Tran Thuy Duong (29 years old) and Pham Ngan Can (13 years old), can speak Vietnamese fluently, sing, read poetry, understand the customs and habits of the Vietnamese people. This is Dung's achievement after many years of teaching Vietnamese language and traditional culture to her children. When asked about her experience in Taiwan, she credits her fellow Vietnamese for helping her adapt to the foriegn land.

“In 2000, when I first came to Taiwan, I joined other Vietnamese people to work as volunteers in community colleges and cultural centers. When caring and creating joy for the elderly, we organize singing lessons and teaching Vietnamese to them.

We also prepare Vietnamese costumes. Whenever there are traditional cultural activities of the Vietnamese people, we will invite Taiwanese friends to wear the costume, learn and experience the traditional costumes of the Vietnamese people."

These activities help promote Vietnamese culture and cuisine to Taiwanese people. Currently, the Vietnamese community in Taiwan is relatively large (about 470,000 people, including Vietnamese brides, workers, and new immigrants). Many Taiwanese families have Vietnamese daughter-in-law. Helping the elderly understand Vietnamese so that they can communicate with their daughter-in-law, shortening the language gap in the family is appreciated by the Taiwanese community.

Vietnamese Culture Promoted in Taiwan
Pham My Dung talked about the Vietnamese Mid-Autumn Festival in a Vietnamese class. (Photo: Dung Pham)

In 2012, Pham My Dung established the association for cultural promotion and development. Currently, the Association has 500 members from ASEAN countries. They organize activities to promote culture, cuisine and the Vietnamese language. According to Dung, in Taiwan, compared to other languages, Vietnamese is the language studied by more people. After each Vietnamese language lesson, the people of Taiwan have the opportunity to understand more about the culture and customs of the Vietnamese people.

Ngo Pham Tran, president of the Taiwan - Vietnam Economic, Cultural and Educational Development Association said that the Taiwanese government always promotes cooperation with Southeast Asian countries, including Vietnam. With more than 20,000 new immigrants (Vietnamese people immigrating to Taiwan) and more than 40,000 second-generation expatriates, trainees, and workers, Vietnamese has become an elective language in Taiwan schools.

Vietnamese teachers introduce the unique culture of Vietnam in the lesson. Therefore, Taiwanese students and people understand more about Vietnamese culture and people. They love Vietnamese cuisine through famous delicacies introduced such as pho, banh mi, and spring rolls. They also look forward to visiting Vietnam.

Vietnamese Culture Promoted in Taiwan
The second generation of Vietnamese people learn about Vietnamese culture. (Photo: Dung Pham)

Promoting Vietnamese culture

To widely spread Vietnamese culture, along with the introduction of the Vietnamese language, many expatriates believe that it is necessary to promote Vietnamese culture through the local language.

Ngo Pham Tran said that many Taiwanese want to learn information about Vietnamese culture and tourism. However, due to the language gap, they have to find information about Vietnam on their own through some Taiwanese individuals working in the media and social networks. That leads to a situation where information is sometimes inaccurate. Therefore, to promote culture, Vietnam needs to invest in communication, television channels to transmit official information in the local language.

Vietnam needs to establish facebook channels, connecting second-generation overseas Vietnamese. Vietnam also needs to use the local language to talk about Vietnam's image and culture so that the language barrier in promoting Vietnamese culture will be removed.

"Now that we have moved into the digital economy, we should also change by applying modern digital means to promote Vietnamese culture abroad," said Ngo Pham Tran.

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