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Future Orientations in the Country of Memory

Future Orientations in the Country of Memory

Social Conceptions of Time

(p.89) 3. Future Orientations in the Country of Memory
Saigon's Edge
Erik Harms
University of Minnesota Press

This chapter focuses on social change and social transformation in Hóc Môn. It argues that descriptions of Hóc Môn marked the edge as a mixture of orientation to time, a sensibility that combined a distinct future orientation with a symbolically charged form of nostalgia described by scholars who have taken to calling Vietnam “the country of memory.” As local residents described it, Hóc Môn lay somewhere in the middle of this temporal mix of present, past, and future. The sense of place implied a sense of time as well as space. Descriptions of the here and now oscillated between a vanishing rural past and the vanguard of modernization.

Keywords:   social change, social transformation, Hóc Môn, Vietnam, modernization

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