Inner Sanctum Culture maven reflects on a life’s work Huu Ngoc has spent the better part of his life exploring the complicated interactions between culture and history. The award-winning author and newspaper columnist spoke recently with Tran Quynh Hoa. H uu Ngoc, who is the chairman of the Swedish-Vietnamese Fund for the Promotion of Culture, continues to work tirelessly as a writer, orator and cultural researcher at the age of 89. Ngoc has written a number of books on Vietnamese and foreign lifestyles, exploring French, Swedish, Japanese, Laotian and American cultures. His book Lang Du Van Hoa Viet Nam (Wandering Through Vietnamese Culture) won the Gold Award in the Viet Nam Book of the Year competition in 2006. The Ha Noi native, who has recei ved several State honours, also pens columns for Viet Nam News and the French language Le Courrier. Inner Sanctum: After graduating from secondary school, you studied at the Law University. Why did you then turn to a career in the field of culture? I belong to a generation that witnessed a lot of fluctuations in the economy, in politics and in society occurring across the country. I lived through many different major periods: French colonialism reached its peak, then decayed. World War II broke out and came to an end. Japanese troops conquered the country. The so-called An Nam country was supported by the Japanese to make up a sham independent country. Then came the revolution, 30 years of war against French and American troops….