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Book Summary: A photographer's unnerving and poetic odyssey through modern-day Vietnam. Mitch Epstein's evocative pictures reveal a complicated Vietnam that few Americans have ever seen. This is not a document about the war, nor is it the pastoral idyll other photographers have portrayed. Vietnam, through Epstein's eyes, is a disturbing and sublime palimpsest. Vietnam: A Book of Changes interprets a culture and landscape largely cut off from the West for the last thirty years, and now open to a market economy and a new relationship to America. The photographs are suffused with the rawness of Vietnamese life lived on the economic and political edge. Under the layer of friendship lies the tension of politics; under beauty lies violence; under the stark faces of remote villagers is the entrepreneurial momentum drawing them to the city; and under the remnants of war is an artistic bohemia grappling with new freedoms and continued censorship. Epstein's groundbreaking art photography addresses our senses and intellect equally. These pictures bring us into the heart of Vietnam.
Book Summary: How American soldiers opposed and resisted the war in Vietnam While mainstream narratives of the Vietnam War all but marginalize anti-war activity of soldiers, opposition and resistance from within the three branches of the military made a real difference to the course of America’s engagement in Vietnam. By 1968, every major peace march in the United States was led by active duty GIs and Vietnam War veterans. By 1970, thousands of active duty soldiers and marines were marching in protest in US cities. Hundreds of soldiers and marines in Vietnam were refusing to fight; tens of thousands were deserting to Canada, France and Sweden. Eventually the US Armed Forces were no longer able to sustain large-scale offensive operations and ceased to be effective. Yet this history is largely unknown and has been glossed over in much of the written and visual remembrances produced in recent years. Waging Peace in Vietnam shows how the GI movement unfolded, from the numerous anti-war coffee houses springing up outside military bases, to the hundreds of GI newspapers giving an independent voice to active soldiers, to the stockade revolts and the strikes and near-mutinies on naval vessels and in the air force. The book presents first-hand accounts, oral histories, and a wealth of underground newspapers, posters, flyers, and photographs documenting the actions of GIs and veterans who took part in the resistance. In addition, the book features fourteen original essays by leading scholars and activists. Notable contributors include Vietnam War scholar and author, Christian Appy, and Mme Nguyen Thi Binh, who played a major role in the Paris Peace Accord. The book originates from the exhibition Waging Peace, which has been shown in Vietnam and the University of Notre Dame, and will be touring the eastern United States in conjunction with book launches in Boston, Amherst, and New York.
Book Summary: A much-needed behind-the-scenes survey of an emerging Asian power The eyes of the West have recently been trained on China and India, but Vietnam is rising fast among its Asian peers. A breathtaking period of social change has seen foreign investment bringing capitalism flooding into its nominally communist society, booming cities swallowing up smaller villages, and the lure of modern living tugging at the traditional networks of family and community. Yet beneath these sweeping developments lurks an authoritarian political system that complicates the nation’s apparent renaissance. In this engaging work, experienced journalist Bill Hayton looks at the costs of change in Vietnam and questions whether this rising Asian power is really heading toward capitalism and democracy. Based on vivid eyewitness accounts and pertinent case studies, Hayton’s book addresses a broad variety of issues in today’s Vietnam, including important shifts in international relations, the growth of civil society, economic developments and challenges, and the nation’s nascent democracy movement as well as its notorious internal security. His analysis of Vietnam’s “police state,” and its systematic mechanisms of social control, coercion, and surveillance, is fresh and particularly imperative when viewed alongside his portraits of urban and street life, cultural legacies, religion, the media, and the arts. With a firm sense of historical and cultural context, Hayton examines how these issues have emerged and where they will lead Vietnam in the next stage of its development.
Book Summary: This work examines the historiography of the Vietnam War, which still polarises opinion today. It describes and evaluates the main arguments of scholars, participants and journalists and questions whether the war was inherently doomed to failure, or was lost due to inept strategy, poor leadership and a biased media.
Book Summary: Ratliff, one of the leading experts on the economics of Southeast Asian countries, examines the remarkable, pro-market, pro-entrepreneurial changes underway in Vietnam. Ratliff then reviews the cultural and historical experiences that provide the foundation for current pro-enterprise reforms, discusses the changes that followed "reunification" at the end of the Vietnam War, and the reforms that began twenty years ago. In the process, Vietnam Rising illuminates the hows and whys of entrepreneurial opportunities and the changes necessary to address the remaining traditional and institutional challenges for creating a truly open, market-based, entrepreneurial climate.