Laos

Not Too Laousy

The Culture of Laos

This newsletter will enlighten you on how the Laotians live and what their typical day looks like.

Where is it?

Laos is in the Indochinese Peninsula, landlocked below China, and between Thailand, Burma, and Vietnam.
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History of Laos

As early as the 14th century, the kingdom of Lao was formed by Lan Xang
Control of the kingdom passed from one family to another until becoming a French colony in 1893
Laos became its own independent country in 1953
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People and Culture

There are 6,803,699 people in Laos
There are over 100 ethnicities within Laos
55% Lao, 11% Khmou, 8% Hmong, 26% Other
The official language is Lao, but French, English, and other various tribal languages are spoken
67% of the population is Buddhist, 1.5% Christian, and 31.5% other
The almost third of the people under "other" contain mostly tribal beliefs of animism, religions where they believe in animals as spirits
72.7% of the population is literate
This is an extremely low literacy rate, signaling that Laos is very underdeveloped
Life expectancy is 63.51 years
Under 3% of the GDP is given to fund health care
Risk to major diseases is very high since health care is poor and underdeveloped
Sanitation is also a major factor in this
The infant mortality rate is very high, roughly 55 infants per 1,000 births
The death rate, although, is not high at almost 8 deaths per 1,000 people
The health care is very, very poor as there is only one physician for 5,000 people
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Society of Laos

At the top of the social chain are elders
Many of the elders are religious leaders, who happen to be second in the chain of respect
Since most of the population is Buddhist, most Laotians are conservative and quiet
Family is considered very important in the society
Sometimes family members will just show up at your house and live there for a while
As soon as you get out of the main cities, people will be wearing clothes similar to the ones in the picture above.
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Laos Government, Economy, and Entertainment

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