For The Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network, Tony Ho Tran discusses the Hennessy, a French cognac, as a status symbol in Vietnamese culture. It’s a fascinating read.
France’s relationship with Vietnam began in 1857 when French forces, at the behest of Napoleon III, seized Saigon, though it wasn’t until nearly 30 years later did the country become officially colonized. What would unfold over the next century would be an abusive relationship of love and hate. While Vietnam fought against the colonizers in decades long bloody conflicts that included two wars and a battle that eventually saw them leave the country, the Vietnamese also grew to glorify all things French.