The Vietnamese culture, is a rich heritage on many different levels, one of the best ways to view Vietnamese culture is to look at the system of yin and yang. On one side you have the yang the more male side that has more of a fondness towards hierarchy where the father or the eldest male is the leader of the family with conventional rules to follow depending on their social roles. On the other hand you have the yin moving towards human equality, female contribution, and more of an emphasis on feelings. Yin and yang are the basis for Vietnamese family life and even government policy.
Geoffrey Murray the author of Customs and Etiquette of Vietnam wrote in his book that the Vietnamese do not shake hands but clasp their hands together above waist level and bow slightly as a sign of acknowledgement. It is said that the Vietnamese value system is based on four basic tenets, which is their allegiance to their family, yearning for a good name, love of learning, and respect for other people.
Vietnam is a country with many etiquette and customs and one should know the basic etiquette and customs before going for a visit. One of their oldest etiquettes are that woman would not sit next to a man unless he was her husband because of respect but this is not widely practiced anymore but it is important information to keep in mind. Younger people also do not look eye to eye and bow their heads when talking to men or to an elderly as a sign of respect. Ron Emmons the author of The Rough Guide to Vietnam wrote, when visiting avoid public displays of affection with a member of the opposite sex. Do not touch someone’s head or pass anything over someone’s head, do not stand with your hands on your hips or over your chest these are some of the basic etiquette Vietnam has.
Dining etiquette and customs are when or if invited to a Vietnamese home it is kind to bring fruits, flowers sweets or incense as a sign of thankfulness. Kim Fay the