Friday, January 11, 2019

Laos (#1)

Laos is a Southeast Asian country traversed by the Mekong River and known for mountainous terrain, French colonial architecture, hill tribe settlements and Buddhist monasteries. 
A Yao (Iu Mien) father walks with his son in the town of Nam Kheung in Houa Khong Province
In the late 19th century, Luang Prabang was ransacked by the Chinese Black Flag Army. France rescued King Oun Kham and added Luang Phrabang to the Protectorate of French Indochina. Shortly after, the Kingdom of Champasak and the territory of Vientiane were added to the protectorate.
Four Blue Hmong (Hmong Njua) boys pose in a Hmong village in the vicinity of Muang Vang Vieng in Vientiane Province wearing traditional black baggy pants. One wears a beret.
Laos never had any importance for France other than as a buffer state between Thailand and the more economically important Annam and Tonkin. By 1940, around 600 French citizens lived in Laos. 
The new cement block school in Muang Meung in Houa Khong Province was officially dedicated on September 14, 1972. The different ethnic groups were represented at the celebrations, including these three Akha boys.
Apart from French colonial architecture, it is the berets that form a strong link between France and present day Laos population. 
Unidentified gentleman, 1964-66

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