Japan and Dai Viet (former Vietnam) in the 17th century: privileged partners?

Wednesday 15 May 2024 to 18H00

Conference by Pierre-Emmanuel Bachelet, lecturer in Modern and Contemporary History of East Asia and South-East Asia at the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon and member of the East Asia Institute (UMR 5062).

From the mid-16th century, the Japanese were prohibited from trading directly with China due to the depredations caused by Sino-Japanese pirates. Looking for an alternative to access the Chinese market, they are therefore turning to Southeast Asia, and in particular to Dai Viet, which has several comparative advantages: a similar perception of commercial and diplomatic practices, a common language (written Chinese) and local silk production. This connection made the Nguyễn lordship, in the center of present-day Vietnam, one of Japan's main partners in the 17th century, including after the shogunate forbade the Japanese from leaving the country in 1635.
In the wake of a historiography combining a global approach and microhistory, Pierre-Emmanuel Bachelet strives to restore the vitality of these exchanges and the communities established in Đại Việt, particularly in the Japanese quarter (Nihonmachi) of Hội An. It shows in particular that the Japanese were leading intermediaries in relations between Vietnamese and Europeans.



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