COOL CLASSES: “The Viet Nam Wars”

COOL CLASSES: “The Viet Nam Wars”

Class name: “The Viet Nam Wars”

Taught by: Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor of History Huong Nguyen


Here’s what Nguyen had to say about her class:
My current course, “The Viet Nam Wars,” is an in-depth analysis of Vietnamese history and the struggles for independence and national unification from antiquity to the present day. It covers the historical roots and the contemporary contexts of revolution and war, various objectives and motivations of its Vietnamese participants, and the enormous human costs suffered by the wars’ victims. Employing a multi-faceted approach, including several memoirs from different perspectives, primary sources, scholarly articles, literature, and visual documentaries, this course reflects the wide array of issues, ideologies, and participants involved in various conflicts regarding French colonialism, Japanese occupation, American intervention, and internal divisions.

A core component of the course is the “Oral History Project,” which offers the students the opportunities to think and write like historians via conducting interviews with the Viet Nam War generation. The interviewees include local American Viet Nam veterans, a Vietnamese veteran, a Cambodian of Chinese ethnicity, and an American peace activist currently residing in the Greater Philadelphia area. The students develop their interviewing skills while exploring first-hand human experiences from battlefield stories to anti-war activism to personal narratives about everyday life during and after the Viet Nam era. All interviews will be made available to researchers on our project website via the Haverford College Libraries.

See what other courses the Department of History is offering this semester.

Cool Classes is a series that highlights interesting, unusual, and unique courses that enrich the Haverford experience.

Photos by Patrick Montero. 

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