Dilemma of a Vietnamese Name?!


—– Đọc bài tiếng Việt —–

Borrowing is never an ultimate solution. If you love something so much, create your own. This holds true for the Vietnamese language. Long gone were the days when Vietnamese people had to use Chinese characters to write their spoken language. Modern Vietnamese has been widely used since 1919. Evolved from a history that reflects a mixture of foreign influences that dominated the course of the nation since the earliest days, Vietnamese language uses the Latin alphabet of abc intersected with diacritics (or the accent marks.) Without a doubt, the uniqueness of Vietnamese language lies, among other things, in the diacritics. As a Việt Nam-freak, (e.g., I jealously guard anything Vietnamese) I even think that without diacritics, it is not Vietnamese.

Then I realized that in the past years I had omitted the diacritics in my name without a blink, in my email, Facebook, and miscellaneous online accounts. I started to think. I didn’t have a choice? I was a creature of habits? Or I believed that Vietnamese names with no diacritical marks were a sign of globalization?

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