A new Discovery Room, new exhibitions, a photo contest, the celebration of Mother Godess, and the promotion of gender equality – Read about the latest news from the Women’s Museum Vietnam.
Discovery Room – A new space for students to experience
On the morning of November 23rd, 2017, the Vietnamese Women’s Museum (VWM) launched the opening of the newly renovated Discovery Room. The aim of the discovery room is to provide knowledge for children about gender equality, discuss issues relating to gender, enhance the children’s awareness of gender issues and promote gender equality. Therefore, the museum decided to renovate the discovery room’s contents into three main areas: an area of gender and sexuality, one area of activities, and an area to read books. in which gender activities are the core activities. Its contents are shown through visual educational tools or games so that students can experience and find out more about many aspects of life. It includes the difficult issues that are hard for parents to talk about with their children such as how the child was born, the similarities and the difference between gender and sexuality, how the children behave in different situations so they can gain skills to protect themselves, etc. It is also a friendly and comfortable space for children to develop their imagination, discover new ideas based on many activities and create chances to explore experiences, discuss their feelings and create, as well as give them the ability to think independently and promote teamwork.
Exhibition “Women and Innovation 2017”
On the occasion of Vietnamese Women’s Day, on October 15th, 2017, the Vietnamese Women’s Museum organized “Women and Innovation 2017” exhibition to introduce hundreds of ideas and innovative products by such sector as economics, education and training, science and technology and culture, arts and society. These products are created, or improved by individuals, groups of women from different ministries, all sectors of society, many provinces and cities throughout the country to increase efficiency at work and in their private lives; reduce disaster risk, and adapt to climate change. Twenty-three outstanding innovative products are commended and nine of the best ideas were selected for the final round by the Organizing Committee. The exhibition has rekindled the spirit of innovation of Vietnamese women in all fields. It is also to praise and honor women’s innovations in many activities’ and share experiences to be applied in life. It also contributes to the implementation of the national program to respond to climate change, and support the law on natural disaster prevention and control, encourage social and economic development, and sustainable poverty reduction.
The Photo Contest: Vietnamese Equal Families
From March to June, 2017, Embassy of Sweden in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Vietnamese Women’s Museum conducted the new photo contest “Vietnamese Equal Families” at the museum. This contest is the follow up to the 2016 photo contest “Vietnamese Fathers. The organizers of the photo contest want to promote equality in families, encourage shared responsibilities among family members, including child care, and housework, at the same time, striving for a personal career and making positive contributions to society. The competition received around one thousand entries. More than 30 best photos will be selected by the jury and shown in an exhibition on this theme. The first and the second place prizes will be decided by the jury while third place will be selected by the public on the Embassy of Sweden’s Facebook page. The public appreciate the contest “Equal families” and considers this a practical activity to promote sharing work between family members. The contest has transferred a meaningful message to the public “Real and sustainable equality must begin from family where all members share and care and help each other so everybody has opportunity to learn and pursue their career. Equality is the base for a happy family”.
Celebrating Vietnam Mother Goddess Worship in the Republic of Korea
With the support of the Vietnam Embassy in the Republic of Korea (RoK), the Vietnamese Women’s Museum (VWM) and the Vietnam Cultural Centre in RoK co-organized the exhibition and celebration of Vietnam Mother Goddess Worship on May 20th, 2017 in South Korea. The exhibition not only introduced a unique Vietnamese worship to international friends but also brought Vietnamese expatriates closer to home. Ms. Nguyen Thi Bich Van, Director of the VWM, said this was the first time the Museum has organized an event overseas on Mother Goddess Worship, since it was officially recognized by UNESCO as an intangible cultural heritage of humanity in late 2016. The VWM chose RoK for organizing the exhibition because the two countries have cultural similarities. After hearing the brief introduction, visitors had a chance to attend a “Len dong” ritual, which is the major component in practicing the worship. The audience was so captivated by the performance that they joined the dances with the performers, which created a jubilant festival atmosphere and intertwined ethnic identities. Following the performance, the visitors also had opportunities to understand more about Mother Goddess worship through images, costumes, and props which are used for “Len dong” ritual. The Museum was delighted to be able to take this cultural heritage to a wider audience, and were pleased to see such an enthusiastic response to the “Len dong” performance.
Promoting gender equality in Vietnam through images of women
The Vietnamese Women’s Museum has just released 3 posters with a bold, new, thought-provoking style, thanks to the help of a local creative agency. The posters are intended to highlight the key role women played in the country’s labor force during the Vietnam War, with the existential challenge they still face in the workplace and society at large today. By linking the history of Vietnamese women’s empowerment through the Vietnam War with current trends in global media, they delivered provocative statements, using PROPAGANDA-style posters, to attract the attention of both foreigners and Vietnamese.
These historical messages are well matched with contemporary life, using headlines developed based on modern memes drawn from global political and media landscapes, such as Facebook, women’s rights, and the ‘Glass Ceiling’ debate. The images used for the three posters in this “travel-through-time” series also hint at a wealth of other visual treasures waiting to be discovered within the museum’s historical photo collection.