In both English- and Vietnamese-language accounts of the Vietnam War, the Republic of Vietnam (or South Vietnam) has long been overlooked or dismissed as an illegitimate puppet government largely created and propped up by the United States. Nonetheless, both the First Republic (1955-1963) and the Second Republic (1967-1975) had millions of supporters and were shaped by leaders and contributors who, whatever else, held sincere visions for what a constitutional, pluralistic Vietnam south of the Seventeenth Parallel might look like. This course provides a detailed assessment of the history of the Republic of Vietnam, beginning with its intellectual and political origins during the mid-colonial period through to its fraught manifestation and ultimate disintegration in the midst of a conflict that had evolved into a global Cold War struggle. In so doing we will examine the politics, economics, and culture of the Republic of Vietnam, addressing how and why the Republic came into being; the basis of Republican visions and ideology; and the nature and causes of the Republics abrupt collapse from within in the fateful spring of 1975.

offering time

Spring 23




Sean Fear(V)


Course code


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