Vietnam at War

History 111D

Spring 2016
Day & Time: 
TuTh 1100-1230

This course examines the social and political history of the wars that engulfed Vietnam during the post-WWII era.   It introduces two interpretive approaches to the history of these conflicts – the “Orthodox” and the “Revisionist” schools – as well as a new framework known as the Vietnam-centric school.   It foregrounds the role of Vietnamese actors and institutions and places twentieth-century developments within the broader context of Vietnamese history. While focusing on the Second Indochina War (1954-1975), it also examines the rise of regionalism, nationalism and communism prior to WWII as well as the history of the First Indochina War (1946-1954) and the Third Indochina War (1978-80).  Major topics addressed include the battle of Dien Bien Phu, the Geneva Accords, the establishment of northern and southern Vietnamese states during the 1950s, the history of American, Soviet and Chinese intervention, the escalation of the War in 1965, the Tet Offensive, Vietnamization, the Paris Accords, the American withdrawal and the Fall of Saigon.   We will also discuss representations of the conflict in film, literature and popular culture.  

Course Books

Paradise of the Blind by Duong Thu Huong William Morrow Paperbacks. ISBN: 9780060505592 Required
The Things They Carried by O'Brien, Tim mariner books. ISBN: 9780618706149 Required
War Comes to Long An by Race, Jeffrey University of California Press. ISBN: 9780520260177 Required
America's Longest War by Herring, George McGraw-Hill Education. ISBN: 9780073513256 Required