What are the cultural characteristics of Xu Dong (old name of Hai Duong)? How to promote such cultural values?
Xu Dong's culture contains both the characteristics of Vietnamese culture and specific features of Hai Duong people. In the photo: The Army Festival recreates the victory against Mongol-Yuan invaders on the Luc Dau river at Con Son – Kiep Bac Autumn Festival (file photo)
Hai Duong is home to 1,098 historical and cultural relics and tourist attractions from Paleolithic imprints dating back over 30,000 years in Thanh Hoa cave on Nham Duong mountain to valuable relics of the Bronze Age in Doi Thong (Kinh Mon), Huu Chung (Tu Ky), Gop village (Thanh Ha), etc.
The culture of Ly, Tran, Le, and Nguyen dynasties is a continuous and brilliant flow in this land, forming a special cultural space – a place of harmonious combination of majestic natural landscape and historical and spiritual depth with 127 national and special national relics, typically Con Son – Kiep Bac and Phuong Hoang in Chi Linh.
Xu Dong's culture is the tradition of good and healthy customs, habits, and lifestyles of Hai Duong residents in the past and at present, which have been handed down and expressed through traditional festivals.
Typically, Con Son festival (in spring) and Kiep Bac festival (in autumn) are two of the biggest festivals of the country aside from many other traditional festivals.
There are big processions and special folk games at all festivals, such as the army festival on the Luc Dau river (Kiep Bac festival), boat racing (Quat temple festival), stick fighting (Cuoi temple festival), etc.
With 566 restored festivals, Xu Dong's festivals are imbued with historical, custom, belief, and religious elements to pray for national peace and prosperity, good crops, and a comfortable life and praise ancestors and national heroes making great contributions to the people and the country, showing the moral principle "When drinking water, remember its origin" and aiming for the true, the good, and the beautiful.
Xu Dong's culture is characterized by laboriousness and creativity, thereby creating famous products like Thanh Ha thieu lychee
Xu Dong is also famous as one of the cradles of cheo (traditional operetta) in the Northern delta. In addition, it also keeps many genres of folk art like tuong (classical drama), water puppetry, circus, ca tru (ceremonial singing), hat trong quan (a kind of alternate singing between men and women), etc. That rich traditional culture has revealed decent, lyrical, optimistic, and romantic features in Xu Dong people's personality.
Xu Dong's culture is characterized by laboriousness and creativity which were formed and developed from the labor of people in this land.
They have created such traditional products as cai hoa vang glutinous rice in Kinh Mon, thieu lychee in Thanh Ha, watermelons in Gia Loc, and "tough" sugar-apples and "honey" bananas in Chi Linh or domestically and internationally famous specialty foodstuffs like green bean cakes, banh khao (patty made of smashed rice), banh cuon (steamed rolled pancake), and nem chua (fermented pork roll) in Hai Duong city, ramie cakes in Ninh Giang, Ke Sat dry pancakes in Binh Giang, Phu Loc wine in Cam Giang, etc.
Hai Duong is also home to many famous traditional trade villages, such as Kinh Chu stone carving in Kinh Mon, Dong Giao wood carving in Cam Giang, Chau Khe jewelry in Binh Giang, Chu Dau pottery in Nam Sach, etc. Products of these traditional trade villages show the creativity, skill, and talent of Xu Dong people.
An outstanding feature of Xu Dong's culture is studious tradition. Under feudalism, Hai Duong was one of the leading localities in the country in the number of Confucian doctors (498), including 11 first doctoral laureates, and had Mo Trach doctor village in Binh Giang with 39 doctors. Mao Dien temple of literature in Cam Giang demonstrates the studious tradition of Xu Dong people.
Hence, it can be seen that the core of Xu Dong – Hai Duong's culture fully and boldly contains the values of Vietnamese culture and traditions of Hai Duong people, namely patriotism, self-strengthening, solidarity, sense of community, kindness, tolerance, respect for affection, gratitude, and morality, industriousness, creativity, sophistication, simplicity, studiousness, skill, talent, optimism, determination, difficulty overcoming, etc.
LUONG ANH TE