Cult, Culture, and Authority
Princess Lieu Hanh in Vietnamese History
Publication Year: 2007
Published by: University of Hawai'i Press
My path to this point of my life has been neither straight nor short. From the time I was first introduced to Asia in 1982 till now, a good number of years have elapsed. My way could have been shorter, no doubt. But new countries, new jobs, new interests have only confirmed that my allegiance lies with Vietnam and Vietnamese studies, which I was so fortunate to...
Nineteen eighty-eight. My first trip to Vietnam. I discover the country I studied for five years at Leningrad State University. The pages read, the lessons learned, the conversations conducted, all these come alive. Back then, Vietnam and the Soviet Union were still brotherly countries. I was an interpreter for a Soviet delegation on a visit of...
1: Writing Hagiographies, Creating History
An awareness of supernatural beings is a widespread human experience. Naming these beings and establishing rituals for experiencing their presence arises from the application of human thought and authority. The supernatural cannot be named without provoking questions about the meaning of the name as well as who has the right to speak...
2: The Appearance of Lieu Hanh's Cult
Nguyen Quang Le, a modern northern scholar, has argued that Mother worship originated among northern Vietnamese and, like all other aspects of Vietnamese language and culture, subsequently spread to the central and southern parts of what is today the modern state of Vietnam...
3: Contending Narratives in Classical Voices
Once Lieu Hanh’s cult was established as a visible aspect of popular culture, educated people found ways to make use of it. From being a dynamic aspect of village life, a focus of religious practices and community events, it was given literary form and philosophical significance, thereby becoming a figure of contention among intellectuals, who
4: Vernacularization of the Sublime
In the previous chapter, we saw how in the eighteenth century
5: From Superstition to Cultural Tradition
The group was welcomed by district officials with a formal reception at which speeches were made about the necessity of developing cultural traditions and of strengthening ties between peoples. To a former citizen of the Soviet Union who left that country in 1990, before the country...