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Willing to improve? Modern marketplaces and civilised trade in a northern Vietnamese village


Horat, Esther (2020). Willing to improve? Modern marketplaces and civilised trade in a northern Vietnamese village. South East Asia Research, 28(1):56-69.

Abstract

In the years following the launch of the Open Door policies in Vietnam in the late 1980s, Ninh Hiệp, a peri-urban village located on the edge of Hanoi, has experienced significant economic growth. Due to the expansion of its marketplace, it has become a crucial node for wholesale fabric and ready-made clothing trade in northern Vietnamand was thus hailed as success story. In the spirit of Tania Li (2007) and “The will to improve” this article shows how, by issuing and implementing decrees to establish new and to renovate existing marketplaces, the Vietnamese state attempts to build a “civilised” nation. The article argues that private investors can be seen as new development actors that recently joined the ranks of influential individuals negotiating the road towards modernity—yet rather than being beyond the state, they are in alliance with it. Finally, the article also traces the trend towards private markets in recent years and how this paves the way for an exclusionary development of marketplace trade.Based on twelve months of in-depth ethnographic field research in northern Vietnam in 2012-2013, this article looks closely at the changing, and at times contested, ideas of development and modernity in post-reform Vietnam.

Abstract

In the years following the launch of the Open Door policies in Vietnam in the late 1980s, Ninh Hiệp, a peri-urban village located on the edge of Hanoi, has experienced significant economic growth. Due to the expansion of its marketplace, it has become a crucial node for wholesale fabric and ready-made clothing trade in northern Vietnamand was thus hailed as success story. In the spirit of Tania Li (2007) and “The will to improve” this article shows how, by issuing and implementing decrees to establish new and to renovate existing marketplaces, the Vietnamese state attempts to build a “civilised” nation. The article argues that private investors can be seen as new development actors that recently joined the ranks of influential individuals negotiating the road towards modernity—yet rather than being beyond the state, they are in alliance with it. Finally, the article also traces the trend towards private markets in recent years and how this paves the way for an exclusionary development of marketplace trade.Based on twelve months of in-depth ethnographic field research in northern Vietnam in 2012-2013, this article looks closely at the changing, and at times contested, ideas of development and modernity in post-reform Vietnam.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
390 Customs, etiquette & folklore
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Geography, Planning and Development
Social Sciences & Humanities > Development
Social Sciences & Humanities > Political Science and International Relations
Uncontrolled Keywords:Civilisation, development, privatisation, marketplace, Vietnam
Language:English
Date:2020
Deposited On:31 Jan 2021 15:42
Last Modified:01 Feb 2021 21:00
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0967-828X
Additional Information:This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in South East Asia Research on 30 Jan 2020, available online: http://wwww.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/0967828X.2020.1715829.
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/0967828X.2020.1715829
Official URL:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/0967828X.2020.1715829

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Language: English
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Embargo till: 2021-08-01