Voices on Vietnam Fall 2016 Speakers’ Series presents H.E. Nguyen Phuong Nga, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to the United Nations

“Viet Nam in the 21st Century”

Recorded November 15, 2016.

Since the end of the Cold War in 1991, Vietnam has maintained the second highest growth rate in the world, but it has also had to encounter and overcome many new foreign policy challenges. In her talk, H.E. Ambassador Nguyễn Phương Nga discusses the work of Vietnam’s Permanent Mission to the UN as well as Vietnam’s broader foreign policy. She focuses in particular on new foreign policy challenges facing Vietnam today, including the territorial dispute in the South China Sea, environmental diplomacy, and international trade and cooperation and details the history of Vietnam-U.S. relations.


Voices on Vietnam Spring 2016 Speakers’ Series presents Professor Christopher Goscha (Université du Québec à Montréal)

“Towards a History of Modern Vietnam”

Recorded May 5, 2016.

Acclaimed historian and Vietnam specialist Christopher Goscha, Professor of History at Université du Québec à Montréal, discusses his latest work, The Penguin History of Modern Vietnam (2016). Popular impressions of Vietnam are still largely dominated by the Vietnam War, with most English-language accounts focused on American experiences, sources, and perspectives. But Vietnam’s history is much richer and more complex than a mere Cold War confrontation, complete with expansion, schisms, colonial conquest and subjugation, cultural renaissance, and revolution. Drawing on research and discoveries from a host of Vietnamese-language and global sources, Professor Goscha outlines a rich and compelling overview of modern Vietnamese history, portraying a cast of memorable characters – from Emperors to rebels, poets to priests – and providing a fascinating look at the intricacies and complexities of modern Vietnamese history. Compelling for scholars and non-specialists alike, The Penguin History of Modern Vietnam represents the first English-language general history of contemporary Vietnam.


Voices on Vietnam Fall 2015 Speakers’ Series presents Nhã Ca with introduction by Professor Olga Dror (Texas A&M University)

“Mourning Headband for Huế: a riveting account of the Tết Offensive” 

Recorded October 27, 2015. Translation and subtitles provided by Voices on Vietnam.

This lecture features journalist, essayist and short-story writer Nhã Ca (Trần Thu Vân). A leading literary figure in South Vietnam’s Second Republic (1967-1975), Nhã Ca played a prominent role in Saigon’s burgeoning print media scene. Though largely neglected in conventional scholarly accounts of the Vietnam War, South Vietnam’s raucous and at times relatively free press offers a unique window into a society fraught with ambivalence towards both the Northern and Southern Vietnamese governments, the burdens of American intervention, and the spiraling civilian cost of prolonging the war. Nhã Ca shares her experiences as an author and journalist during this turbulent time. She also discussed “Giải khăn sô cho Huế,” her riveting account of the 1968 communist massacre in the city of Huế during the Tết Offensive, a seminal but long-overlooked event in English-language accounts of the Vietnam War. “Giải khăn sô cho Huế” has been translated as “Mourning Headband for Huế” by Professor Olga Dror [Indiana University Press, 2014].


Voices on Vietnam Spring 2015 Speakers’ Series presents Professor Keith Taylor (Chair, Asian Studies at Cornell University) & Professor Fredrik Logevall (Stephen ’59 and Madeline ’60 Anbinder Professor of History at Cornell University)

“The State of Vietnam: 40 Years After the Vietnam War” 

Recorded April 29, 2015.

Forty years after the fall of Saigon, the Vietnam War remains a powerful and often painful memory in the United States, its legacy still hotly contested.  And as the recent conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, and now Syria have grown increasingly costly and protracted, a renewed interest in the lessons of Vietnam has emerged among pundits, scholars, and statesmen alike. To mark the 40th university, our inaugural Voices on Vietnam event featured two leading experts in Vietnamese history, Professors Fredrik Logevall and Keith Taylor, who shared their latest research on the Vietnam War and contemporary Vietnam, and their thoughts on the current state and future prospects of the Vietnam History field.

Fredrik Logevall was the Stephen ’59 and Madeline ’60 Anbinder Professor of History, Vice Provost for International Affairs, and Director of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies at Cornell University.  He is the author of Choosing War: The Lost Chance for Peace and the Escalation of War in Vietnam, and Embers of War: The Fall of an Empire and the Making of America’s Vietnam, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize. He is currently the Laurence D. Belfer Professor in the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Keith Taylor is a professor of Sino-Vietnamese Studies and Chair of the Department of Asian Studies at Cornell University.  He is the author of The Birth of Vietnam, and, recently, A History of the Vietnamese.

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