Name of ethnic group: Xinh Mun (Puoc, and Pua).
Population: 18,018 people (Year 1999).
Locality: Son La and Lai Chau provinces and along the Vietnamese-Lao border regions.
Customs and habits
Xinh Mun houses are built on stilts, have vaulted roofs shaped like a tortoise shell and stairways at both ends of the house. The children take the family name of the father. After the death of the father, the eldest brother is elevated to an important position.
According to marriage customs, the family of the groom must give money to the bride’s family. After the proposal, engagement, and wedding, the husband goes and lives with his wife’s family. A few years later, when the married couple has a few children, the wife is then welcomed to her husband’s house. The couple must change their name and take another name given by the mother-in-law’s younger brother. It is the habit of the Xinh Mun to chew betel nut, dye their teeth black, and drink alcohol.
During the production of rice, people hold many ceremonies and maintain many taboos. The villagers annually organize a ceremony to honour the spirit of the village.
The Xinh Mun language belongs to the Mon-Khmer Group.
They wear garments that resemble the Thai and Lao.
The Xinh Mun grow glutinous rice and corn on burned land and terraced fields. They also gather, rear animals, hunt, make basketry articles, and have developed a system of bartering goods.