The family is the most important of all social units in Vietnam. In contrast to the focus on individualism in the West, the close-knit family is the basic unit in Vietnamese society. "Hieu", or filial piety, is one of the basic virtues. This refers to the idea of love, care, and respect that children give their parents. This obligation is unconditional, even in the case of a parent who abandons the children or does not fulfill his or her parental duties. Children are taught this virtue from a very young age. The socialization process normally begins at home with the teachings from grandparents and parents. This educational process continues throughout a child's early years and is reinforced throughout all the social institutions. One of the most well known Vietnamese proverbs is "Cong Cha nhu nui Thai Son, Nghia Me nhu nuoc trong nguon chay ra. Mot long tho Me kinh Cha, cho tron chu hieu moi la dao con," or The debt we owe our father is as great as Mount Thai son; the debt we owe our mother is as inexhaustible as water flowing from its source. We must repay their debt in order to fulfill our obligations as children" the cradle of traditional in Viet Nam was village place that provided individual with a sense community and security in potentially hostile environment. This along importance family created network extended kinship ties. In traditional Vietnamese culture, strong individuals in a family have an obligation to the weaker and less fortunate members of the family (or village). Every action of every family member reflects on the family, be it achievement or shame. There is a sense of obligation and of providing for the welfare of each and the entire family. An individual who achieves fame at the expense of the family is discouraged and even sanctioned.
Tags : Culture values in Viet Nam