By Mark Sidel
Beginning as a small fishing village along the Hong (Red) River, Hanoi has developed through the centuries into the graceful city that is today the political and cultural capital of Vietnam. Seized by the French in 1882, it served as the capital of Tonkin, France’s protectorate in northern Vietnam and was the site of lengthy anti-colonial struggles that resulted in the departure of the French in 1954.
Vietnamese, Chinese, French, and later Soviet influences have significantly affected the cityscape and physical geography of Hanoi. Traces of Hanoi’s imperial city remain, including the vibrant old city of thirty-six ancient streets, shrines, pagodas, and traditional shophouses. Hanoi is also home to Asia’s finest examples of French colonial architecture, faded but still standing after decades of war and bombing, wrenching conflicts and transformations.
Kuala Lumpur 1998
Oxford University Press
Size 135 x 200 mm
95 pages, 36 pp. illus., 16 pp. in col.