Building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values and human strength in the spirit of the 13th Party Congress

Academy of Politics, Ministry of National Defense
Thursday, July 14, 2022 14:30

Communist Review - Culture and people play a fundamental and important role as being reflected in various contents of the 13th National Congress Documents of the Communist Party of Viet Nam (CPV). Faced with realistic demands, the 13th Party Congress developed theory and improved guidelines by determining the build-up and promotion of Vietnamese cultural values and human strength in a dialectical unity, thus creating a solid foundation and strong driving force for the national rapid and sustainable development. 

General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong learning about Dong Ho folk paintings at Do Temple – a historical and cultural relic in Thuong quarter, Dinh Bang ward, Tu Son city, Bac Ninh province _Photo: Documentation

Some contents on building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength

The 13th National Congress of the CPV is identified as a transitional milestone, creating an important premise for the coming terms to successfully implement the strategic development goal by 2030 as a developing country with a modern industry, high average income, and by 2045 as a developed and high-income nation. For a successful implementation of these goals, along with the comprehensive and synchronous promotion of renovation, industrialization, modernization and development of the knowledge economy, it is necessary to synchronously implement various major contents and solutions in which the building and promotion of the cultural values ​​and human strength in the new period were identified by the 13th Party Congress as one of the key tasks.

Inheriting the contents of resolutions, and documents, especially the Resolution of the 5th Plenum of the 8th Party Central Committee "On the building and development of an advanced Vietnamese culture deeply imbued with national identity", the Resolution of the 9th Central Party Committee (Tenure XI) "On the building and development of Vietnamese culture and people towards sustainable development", and the Documents of the 12th National Congress “On the building and development of culture and people”, the Documents of the 13th National Congress identify the Party’s views on building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values and human strength as a unified and dialectical relationship when affirming: "preserve and promote cultural values and Vietnamese people strength in the cause of national construction and defense, and international integration”(1).

In reality, building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength is a process of skilfully combining, creating, and establishing new cultural values ​​and ethical standards while spreading the best values ​​of culture, ethical standards, spirit and determination, potential, strength and creativity of the Vietnamese people, and creating a driving force for the promotion of the national sustainable, prosperous and stable development. This process also includes preserving good traditional cultural and ethical values ​​to avoid being miscellaneous, buried in oblivion or lost; and proactively and actively absorbing the cultural and moral quintessence of humanity to supplement and enrich cultural and moral values ​​in accordance with the reality. Such an approach represents a new perception in the theoretical thinking of the CPV about Vietnamese culture and people in the new period.

Based on the dialectical relationship between culture and people and vice versa, the Documents of the 13th National Congress of the CPV determine: "strongly arouse patriotism, self-determination, the strength of national unity and aspiration for a prosperous and happy country”(2); at the same time, attach importance to building and promoting national pride, self-reliance, creativity, dedication, aspiration for prosperity, compassion, social consensus to have overall strength in promoting rapid and sustainable development. This point has been emphasized and mentioned for times, demonstrating the high political determination of the CPV in promoting cultural values ​​associated with the Vietnamese people's strength in the new period, being in line with the current development trend and the real condition of the country.

With the view that human beings play the most critical role as a centre, subject, resource as well as development goal, and that cultural values ​​and Vietnamese people are the foundation and important internal strength to ensure sustainable development, the Documents of the 13th Party Congress affirm the meaning and importance of the Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength, creating a foundation for building a cultural value system that is closely and smoothly linked with building Vietnamese standards. It lies in the fact that human beings are creators of material and spiritual values that serve their needs and the society. Vietnamese people building - the most important subject, resource, and development goal - requires the promotion of cultural values ​​associated with preserving, protecting, and improving the standard value and unlocking human potential, intelligence and creativity in all fields of social life. All cultural activities, relations, and institutions are aimed at supplementing and improving the value system and standards, fostering the comprehensive development of people in terms of quality and capability; strengthening love for the homeland, human values, community cohesion, awareness, responsibility, social ethics, law observance, overcoming challenges, especially under the context of complicated epidemic developments. Those activities are to be aimed at: “providing comprehensive human development and building an advanced Vietnamese culture imbued with national identity so that Vietnamese culture and people truly become an internal strength and driving force for the national development and defense”(3). These analyses represent the profound and up-to-date development of the Party's theoretical thinking on the relationship between building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength.

Tasks and solutions to building and promoting Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength in the new context

Firstly, on the building of the national value system, the cultural value system, and human standards of Viet Nam, the Documents of the 13th National Congress of the PVC define: “Focus on research, identification and implementation of building a national value system, a cultural value system and human standards... of Viet Nam in the new era”(4). This is the core issue that guides the building and promotion of Vietnamese cultural values ​​and human strength in the coming years. On the other hand, the development of culture and people largely depends on the building of the national value system, cultural value system, and human standards of Viet Nam. Upon the comprehensive and synchronous cause of renovation and deepening international integration, the construction of the national value system, cultural value system, and human standards of Viet Nam being well presented in the Documents plays an essential role in consolidating and supplementing cultural values ​​and developing the Vietnamese personality.

Accordingly, it is necessary to conduct active research, identification, and building of a national value system, to create a core foundation for building the cultural value system and human standards, to establish strong connection between cultural building, cultural development and people, and to promote cultural values ​​and human strength in the new period. It is also obligatory to continue preserving, supplementing, and improving the core traditional national values ​​such as patriotism, national spirit, humanity, compassion, friendliness, tolerance; local unity, collective spirit, solidarity, gratitude, love for stability, affection, endurance, hospitality, optimism, openness, observation, and creativity... Besides, it is required to foster values, supplement and develop new elements in the value system to meet the requirements of building Vietnamese culture and people. Moreover, patriotism should go in line with self-reliance, national spirit, aspiration for national prosperity and strength; solidarity and national strength should be promoted, creating a strong impetus for strong national construction and defense, prosperity and longevity. Additionally, based on the Vietnamese humanity, kindness, love, morality, tolerance, and generosity, new values are to be collected, researched and preserved to contribute to the promotion of international relations. In the new era, the cultural values ​​and standards of Vietnamese people such as self-esteem, industriousness, humility, simplicity, optimism, intelligence, creativity, sensitivity, and good traditional family values ​​need to be nurtured, supplemented, enriched, spread out and oriented in all fields of the social life.

The build-up of the cultural value system should be aimed at supplementing and improving human ethical standards that are suitable for the new period in which morality, knowledge, physical health, and aesthetics play a vital role in improving the systems of cultural values and national values. Based on reality, it is essential to determine appropriate contents and solutions to building the systems of national values and cultural values and human standards associated with the preservation and development of the Vietnamese family value system to meet the demands of developing a socialist-oriented market economy and deepening international integration. A solid foundation will be built for improving the cultural value system, generating motivation, and promoting the Vietnamese people's strength in the national construction, development, and defense. 

Regarding the motivation for building and promoting the Vietnamese strength, the 13th Party Congress determined "Building mechanisms and policies to promote the spirit of dedication to the country of all Vietnamese people. Maximizing the human factor”(5). Encouraging and creating favourable conditions for all Vietnamese people to promote their creativity in economic and social life. Efficiently operating social policies, ensuring social security and welfare and human security, and realizing social progress and justice. Attaching more importance to providing comprehensive, synchronous and balanced care for people, balancing between material life and spiritual life, balancing between economic and cultural and ethical needs, and constantly improving happiness and quality of life. 

Secondly, regarding the education of Vietnamese people in the new period, the Documents of the 13th Party Congress clearly state: "Strengthening education on patriotism, national pride, national tradition and history, social responsibility for all social classes especially young people... raising awareness on law observance, environmental protection, and the preservation of the Vietnamese cultural identity”(6); at the same time, focusing on educating ethics, personality, creative thinking, life skills, working skills, foreign languages, information technology, digital technology, and core values; linking knowledge, moral, aesthetic and life skills education with physical education, and raising the stature of Vietnamese people.

Building comprehensive educational content with a powerful combination of traditional ​and modern values; inherit values, standards, and good character of traditional Vietnamese people, and making appropriate supplementation suitable with reality and modern science and technology development. Attaching great importance to educating people on kindness, tolerance, sincerity, trust, morality, persistence, industriousness, thrift, creativity, modernity, personality, and a healthy lifestyle. In education, promoting the overall strength of organizations and resources, building a close connection between schools and families, and paying special attention to promoting family cultural values to foster people with good cultural and ethical values and standards.

Along with protecting and promoting cultural values ​​and ethical standards in education, the Documents of the 13th Party Congress confirm: "Adopting optimal solutions to effectively preventing degradation of morality and lifestyle, and stemming out social issues and evils”(7). In particular, the 13th Party Congress pointed out: “Gradually overcoming the limitations of the Vietnamese people; educating the Vietnamese people in a new era with a close combination of traditional ​​and modern value”(8). The CPV requires this task to be accompanied by the education and promotion of traditional Vietnamese virtues formed throughout the long national history. This content represents a powerful combination of "construct" and "combat" in education, reflecting a clearer, deeper and more comprehensive awareness of Vietnamese culture and people, determining basic and decisive cultural values that form identity and people of Viet Nam, and representing the spirit of self-criticism and criticism of the Party.

Faced with the situation: "Ethics, lifestyle in families, schools, and society are worryingly degraded, causing social irritation"(9), the CPV requires education to focus on “educating revolutionary ideals, morality, healthy lifestyle, patriotism, national pride, and aspiration; taking more responsibility towards the nation and the society... for a healthy, comprehensive and harmonious development in terms of intellectual, physical and aesthetic values”(10). Education and training must equip people with the national spirit and character; uphold responsibility in preserving, supplementing, and promoting great Vietnamese family cultural and moral values as well as humanity and school culture. 

Thirdly, in the national development plan 2021 - 2030, the Documents of the 13th Party Congress determine that appropriate attention must be paid to building a healthy cultural environment suitable with international integration. By objective evaluation, our Party made a straightforward judgment: "Culture received less attention than that to economy and politics, and did not become an internal resource and driving force for national sustainable development. The role of culture in human development has not been properly defined. In fact, it seemed to have functioned as entertainment only. Also, there is a lack of major cultural, literary, and artistic works that vividly reflect the scale of the renovation and have positive effects on people. The cultural and social environment continues to be affected by social evils and corruption”(11); some areas become unhealthy, being at odds with the national customs and traditions. From those limitations and shortcomings, the Party determined: "Building, developing and creating the most favourable environment and social conditions to uphold patriotism, national pride, belief and aspirations for the national prosperity and happiness; talents, intelligence, Vietnamese virtue are the most important centre, goal, and development motivation of the nation”(12). At the same time, importance should be attached to the comprehensive and synchronous development of a prosperous, diversified and civilized cultural life, thus creating favourable conditions for a constant supplementation and development of cultural values ​​and human standards, becoming a spiritual foundation, internal resource, and driving force for the economic and social development as well as international integration.

To build a clean and healthy cultural environment, the CPV determines: “Building mechanisms, policies and solutions for a clean and healthy cultural environment, and providing a favourable condition for people to enjoy cultural values”(13). Meanwhile, following the motto: "People know, people discuss, people do, people inspect, people supervise, people benefit"; focusing on promoting the role of family, community, and society to create the overall strength for building a clean and healthy cultural environment, which is really "value-oriented" to: "promote cultural values and human strength of Viet Nam; strongly arousing aspirations for development, patriotism, pride, self-reliance and compassion, solidarity and social consensus; and building a rich, diverse, civilized, healthy cultural, and internationally-integrated environment and life”(14).

Fourthly, it is about cultural values ​​in different fields of social life. To promote cultural values ​​and human strength in social life, the Documents of the 13th Party Congress affirm: "Building and applying cultural standards in leadership and management. Focusing on building a healthy, democratic, united and humane working environment; repel bureaucracy, factionalism, disunity, opportunism and pragmatism. Building corporate, entrepreneurial and business culture”(15). Accordingly, attaching importance to building and spreading cultural values ​​in both politics and economy, especially in Party, State, mass organizations, businesses, and residential communities so that culture can deeply penetrate, and creating a driving force to promote sustainable economic, political, cultural and social development. Upholding the pioneering and exemplary character of cadres, civil servants, and party members in workplaces in behaviour, communication and relationship management with cultural values ranging from words, communication methods, actions to awareness, morality, democratic lifestyle, respect for the people, responsibility and love for comrades; thereby enhancing the build-up of a clean and strong party and political system. This content plays a fundamental role in building culture in politics.

Directing all cultural activities on connecting and raising awareness, attitudes, and behaviours in daily activities and interactions of organizations and people; upholding people’s responsibility and obligations for themselves as well as for their family, the community, the society and the nation. Along with identifying a mechanism to arouse dedication and create motivation for all cadres, civil servants, and public employees to fulfil their tasks and serve the people, it is compulsory to criticize and punish cadres, civil servants and public employees who are indifferent, insensitive, irresponsible, bureaucratic, bossy, and authoritarian.

To bring into full play the cultural values ​​and human strength of the Vietnamese people in the new period, the CPV determines to improve the quality and efficiency of various types of cultural and artistic activities, while ensuring the culture and art development and making a contribution to the education and training of people, and: “work out plans, mechanisms and solutions to properly handle the relationship between preserving and promoting traditional cultural and historical values in human building and socio-economic development”(16); to foster ideological and artistic values; to ensure freedom and democracy in literary and art; to pay attention to and create favourable conditions for the cultural and artistic development for ethnic minorities. Promoting the role of culture and art in fostering the soul and personality of the Vietnamese people, especially the young./.


(1)  Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 202

(2) , (3) Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 115-116

(4), Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 143

(5), (6), (7), (8), Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 47, 143, 143, 143

(9), Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 72

(10), (11), (12), (13) Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 168, 84, 116, 114

(14), (15), (16) Documents of the 13th National Party Congress, Truth National Political Publishing House, Chapter I, Hanoi, 2021, p. 121-122, 144, 145

This article was published in the Communist Review No. 982 (January 2022)