The Vietnam War Through Film, Fiction and Memoir

HISTORY 103F.002

Fall 2015
3104 Dwinelle
Day & Time: 
W 10-12P
  • Note new room.
  • This seminar looks at how the Vietnam War has been represented on screen, in novels and in first-person non-fictional narratives. Early sessions will introduce three dominant interpretive approaches to the history of the Vietnam War: the left-leaning Orthodox School, the right-leaning Revisionist School and the relatively new Vietnam-Centric School. Weekly readings and film screenings will be interpreted in relation to these three distinct scholarly approaches to the War. In addition, a major goal of the class is to compare patterns of representation produced by Americans and by Vietnamese aligned with the communist Democratic Republic of Vietnam (aka North Vietnam) and the non-communist Republic of Vietnam (aka South Vietnam). Attention will also be paid to the way that the war was experienced and represented by combatants and civilians, men and women and intellectuals and people of modest education.

Course Books

Viet Cong Memoir by Truong Nhu Tang Vintage. ISBN: 0394743091 Required
Dragonfish by Tran Vu W.W. Norton & Company. ISBN: 9780393077803 Required
Mourning Headband for Hue by Nha Ca University of Indiana Press. ISBN: 9780253014177 Required
Following Ho Chi Minh by Bui Tin University of Hawaii Press . ISBN: 9780824822330 Required
The Sorrow of War by Bao Ninh Riverhead. ISBN: 9781573225434 Required
The Things they Carried by Tim O'Brien Mariner. ISBN: 9780618706419 Required
The Quiet American by Graham Greene Penguin Classics. ISBN: 0143039024 Required
Vietnam at War by Mark Bradley Oxford University Press. ISBN: 9780192803498 Required