Sophana Srichampa

Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia, Mahidol University, Thailand




Vietnamese slogans in the 21st Century


Slogans are memorable phrases, mottos or short verses designed to remind the reader or listener of the ideal or purpose of an organization or group. Viet Nam, like other newly developing countries, is confronted by new social phenomena and related problems such as increasing numbers of HIV/AIDS, road accidents, tax avoidance and environmental destruction. Therefore, the government has been forced to launch a campaign using slogans to remind people to be aware and take care of such social problems. However, Vietnamese slogans have retained much of the socialist idealism by overtly praising outstanding and important leaders like Ho Chi Minh and promoting the contribution of the Communist Party and members of parliament towards the prosperity of the country. Moreover, the people, women, youth, teachers and farmers are consistently praised by the Communist government.

The sentence structure of Vietnamese slogans varies from simple, to compound and complex. In simple form, some have an internal vowel rhyme - others are more unconventional such as the inclusion of the English word “bye-bye” in the Vietnamese slogan for traffic safety, aimed at attracting the interest of the youth. A remarkable feature is that short slogans are commonly composed for new social issues, whereas traditional communist ideology is usually presented through longer slogans.