The Brâu

03:26 PM 21/01/2016 Views: 1134 Print

In their concepts of animism. Pa Xay is the Creator of the universe, heaven, earth, river, stream, rain, wind, human beings and death.

The Brau led a nomadic life for a long time. They practise slash-and-burn cultivation to grow rice, corn and cassava with rudimentary tools such as axes, knives and sticks to dig holes to put seeds into the holes. Thus they always obtain a low productivity. Generally their houses are built on stilts.

According to custom, the Brau have their faces and bodies tattooed and their teeth filed. Women wear a lot of chains around their arms, ankles and necks. Men often wear loincloths and women pagnes. All leave their upper torsos naked. Young men and women are free to choose their partners. The family of the young man propose marriage and hand wedding presents to the bride's family but the wedding ceremony will be organized in the bride's family. After marriage, the groom must live with his wife's family for several years, before bringing his wife and children home.

It is customary that the dead person is brought outside of the house and is placed in a coffin made from a hollowed-tree trunk. The coffin will be left in a temporary house built by the villagers. All the people come to offer their condolences. gongs are beaten. Some days later, the coffin is buried. All objects such as jars, baskets. knives and axes left in funeral house are provided to the deceased by his or her family.

The Brau like to play gongs and traditional musical instruments. Gongs comprise various kinds. In particular a set of two gongs (called chieng tha) has the value of 30-50 buffaloes. Young girls often play Klong put, a musical instrument includes 5-7 bamboo tupes, long and short, which are joined together. The sound comes when air is forced into them by the clapping of the handi. The length of bamboo tubes and strong or weak claps will make sound variation. The Brau have appropriate folk rhythms used to lull children to sleep or sing in wedding ceremonies. Kite flying, walking on stilts and phet playing are the young people's entertainments.

Due to backward situation and habits of a nomadic life and some other reasons, the Brau group are under-developed. it's worthy of note that this is one of the smallest-population ethnic groups in Vietnam today, with about 200 inhabitants only.