The provincial Department of Culture and Sports conducted a serious test where officials and employees in the State agencies are asked to wear Ao Dai (Vietnamese traditional long dress). Ao Dai has been considered a traditional national dress over many generations.
Thua Thien – Hue provincial People’s Committee decision torenew Hue with cultural factors in order to attract more domestic and foreign tourists is a sound policy that needs wide spread support from both the cultural world and the public. The use of traditional clothes aims to remind people to raise public awareness about preserving the national culture and also to help younger people to learn more about the nation’s traditional dress.
Many leaders of foreign countries dress in their traditional clothes when they appear in the public because these costumesare a key cultural feature and soul of the nation. In international communications, costume and language show the nationality of a person.
Since 2018, many Vietnamese ambassadors have worn traditional costumes while representing the President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. They have all been welcomed by the host country with joy and solemnity.
In a recent interview by Thanh Nien newspaper, Vietnamese Ambassador to India, Nepal and Bhutan, Pham Sanh Chau, said: “I am a pioneer in promoting the traditional Ao Dai for men in diplomatic activities. This comes from professional needs as well as the aspiration to develop the Vietnamese identity. There are many elements in creating national identity; however, for a diplomat, the first identifiable identity is the costume”.
We have the right to be proud of traditional clothing as the common cultural property of the nation. Thanks to the ambassadors’ appearances, international friends identified the image of the Vietnamese traditional national costume. This is the default traditional costume of Vietnam to the world. In other words, the country copyrighted the intellectual property without any registration fees.
Images of cultural cadres in Hue wearing traditional Ao Dai via social network have received not only appreciation but also criticism. It is normal when something new or strange appears in society. The national costume belongs to folklore and custom. Its author was people and it has been accepted and used stably by people over a long historical period.
The project to make Hue become the capital of the traditional Ao Dai is considered a return to national culture. It is a serious economic – cultural policy that should be supported and implemented soon by both agencies and people. In addition to the economic benefits, it rejuvenates the national consciousness so that everyone knows and is obliged to preserve its cultural value.
The experimental activity to renew Hue with a return to national cultural roots is an earnest thought of the Thua Thien – Hue province’s leaders, which needs to be supported and energised.It is expected to attract even more domestic and foreign visitors to Hue.
Economic development on the basis of taking full advantage of cultural potential is the trend of the times. An economy which contains a high cultural content is displaying good signs of sustainable development.