Mnong



Located in the southern highlands of Vietnam, the Mnong (M.NĂ´ng, Mnong Gar, Phii Bree) registered 67,340 in the 1985 census of Vietnam. The scholarly literature is unclear about which groups and subgroups therein should be classified as Mnong. The official classification in Vietnam is apparently a restrictive one, as a population estimate from 1981 lists 180,000 Mnong. The slash-and-burn method of agriculture is used to produce the staple crop, upland rice. Secondary crops are maize, bananas, beans, eggplants, taro, yams, sugar cane, a variety of other vegetables, fruits, and tobacco. Indigo and cotton are grown for weaving, a local art form. Hunting is done by men only, but both men and women fish. Women gather bamboo shoots, saffron, and mint. The Mnong trade pigs and poultry for buffalo, and use cash or produce to obtain salt, jars, and cloth. The Mnong have spirits and rituals for everything in nature, including all animals and inanimate things, for heroes, and for ancestors. Sorcerers are important. Shamans act as medicine men and preside at rituals that often include the sacrifice of buffalo.


Bibliography

Condominas, Georges (1960). "The Mnong Gar of Central Vietnam" (in French). In Social Structure in Southeast Asia, edited by George P. Murdock, 15-23. Viking Fund Publications in Anthropology, 29. Chicago: Quadrangle Books; London: Tavistock Publications.

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