Khmer Ethnic Group

Overview
Name of ethnic group: Khmer (The Viet is of Mien origin and Khmer Krom).
Population: 1,055,174 people (Year 1999).
Locality: Soc Trang, Tra Vinh, Can Tho, Kien Giang and An Giang provinces.

Customs and habits
The Khmer mainly practice Brahmanism and Hinayana Buddhism. Before reaching adulthood, young Khmer people often go to pagodas to study and improve their virtues and knowledge.

Culture
The Khmer have managed to preserve their own language and writings. They usually live with the Kinh and Hoa in "soc" (villages), and "phum" or "ap" (hamlets). The houses are simply built with thatched or tiled roofs. Major Khmer festivals include "Chon Cho Nam Tho May" (New Year Festival), Buddha's Birthday, "Don Ta" (Forgive the Crimes of the Dead), and "Ooc Om Bok" (Moon Worship).

Economy
The Khmer have a long tradition in wet rice cultivation. Animal husbandry, weaving, pottery and sugar making from the "Thot Not" Tree are other forms of economic activity.

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