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The Impact of French in Indochina
The Impact the French had on Indochina was something no one was about to forget soon. It took France about 35 years to complete its takeover of Indochina. In 1858, the French captured Tourane (Da Nang). The region of Saigon was taken over 1862 and a protectorate was declared over Cambodia in 1863. The southern region of Cochin-china was annexed in 1867 and Annam (central region) and Tonkin (northern region) became protectorates in 1883. Laos became a French protectorate in 1883. The fundamental aim of the French in Indochina was economic exploitation. In the decade of the 1980s, Daumier came in and introduced a series of tax and revenue reforms. He established taxes on key consumer items that the people need such as salt, rice-wine and opium. The Vietnamese needed all these products to continue their traditional life such as rituals. By 1935 France’s collective sales of rice wine, salt and opium were earning more than 600 million francs per annum. Imperialism involves powerful states seeking to expand their power by taking control of economic, political and cultural affairs in weaker, undeveloped countries. The people of the colony become subject to the imperial power and part of its empire. This is what the French saw their influence as one of the civilising missions in Indochina. After 1936, when the French extended some political freedoms to the colonies, the party skilfully exploited all opportunities for the creation of legal front organizations, through which it extended its influence among intellectuals, workers and peasants. The French were changing their lives around and brining in French culture and trying to make the Vietnamese adapt to the different life style. French policy was to encourage the educated to serve in the army or civil service and to assimilate into French society. Excluded from political, administrative or managerial positions, the educated Vietnamese became disillusioned with the French...
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