Friday, July 29, 2011

Viet Kieu

It’s quite a strange experience being a Vietnamese-American back in Vietnam for the first time. I was not expecting to have to deal with such complex identity issues. Just merely walking down the street, it is blatantly obvious that I am not a local or a native but I get the impression that I am not viewed in the same light as other Westerners here. It is as if I am held up to a different standard. I am expected to conform to Vietnamese culture and standards although it is quite apparent that I am a foreigner. So what am I? Vietnamese? Westerner? I am a viet-kieu. One who’s parents are of Vietnamese origin and is now returning back to the country. It’s a connection and an identity I have yet to explore and understand but there is still quite a bit of time left for me to figure it out.

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