Comparison of Chinese consciousness as expressed by "Official Vietnamese historians" and "Vietnamese envoys

Kun Chiang Chang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study intends to examine the consciousness of "China" as it is expressed by both "official court historians" in Vietnam and Vietnamese "envoys" sent to China. It was discovered in my research that while writing their histories for the court, Vietnamese historians particularly and intentionally emphasized political and cultural subjectivity in the principles "each empire has its own empire" and "each empire has its own Chinese culture". They have their own idea of "Chinese Order" was heavily stressed. In contrast, Vietnamese envoys in China often had to fight for the national identity of Vietnam "as part of China, not a barbaric country" and purposely expressed their opinion that they possessed "an awareness of themselves as Chinese." These Vietnamese envoys even competed with Chosen envoys over which of the two were more Chineselike. Thus, it is clear that there are differences between the "internal" and "external" expressions of Chinese cultural consciousness in Vietnam during that time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-191
Number of pages25
JournalTaiwan Journal of East Asian Studies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jun 1


  • China
  • Chinese
  • Envoy
  • Historian
  • Vietnam

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • General Arts and Humanities


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