Diasporic hip-hop encounters Feat. Vietnam

Report from Cuong Pham, 2018 ASEAS(UK) Research Impact Award Recipient

Hip Hop Jam in Thành Hóa | Image Credit: © Cuong Pham

In 2018 I was awarded the ASEAS(UK) Research Impact Award to carry out research for my Master’s dissertation. My chosen topic was how diasporic Vietnamese in hip-hop engage with Vietnam. I visited Vietnam in the summer of 2018 and over the course of my trip I attended hip-hop jams and concerts, as well as meeting  hip-hoppers and conducting interviews. I had one memorable evening with the hip-hoppers Suboi and Nodey, who were recording their song when I met them at Nodey’s home studio. Later in the evening both of them shared unreleased songs and even asked for my input!

The ASEAS(UK) Research Impact Award was a unique opportunity that facilitated independent research on a topic which has received little attention. In addition to this I presented my work at the ASEASUK: Southeast Asia Meets Global Challenges Conference, held at the University of Leeds in September 2018. I also presented work at the 10th Engaging with Vietnam: An Interdisciplinary Dialogue conference, held at the Ho Chi Minh University of Social Sciences and Humanities and University of Phan Thiet in December 2018, as well as Flow, hosted by the Asia-Art-Activism Research Network at Raven Row Gallery. This led to many stimulating and engaging academic discussions that developed and pushed my thinking around my project and also provided potential future research opportunities.