This course introduces students to several crucial aspects of Vietnam Studies as an inter-/trans-disciplinary field and a part of regional studies. Students will first learn what “transdisciplinarity” and “area/regional studies” are, what regional studies we are talking about when talking about Vietnam, and why they are playing important roles in our understanding of the country and its people. Key concepts in social sciences and the humanities (such as “power,” “society,” “culture,” “nation-state,” “national identity,” “national pride,” “colonial mentality,” “inferiority complex,” or “globalization”) will be discussed to create a basic theoretical foundation for further understanding of multiple “Vietnams” in the making. Students will have the opportunity to examine a few case studies, approve or question their research outcomes with a critical mind. Students will also have a chance to learn about local studies, recognizing the importance of the studies of urban centers and rural areas, such as Ho Chi Minh City (formerly, Saigon), Hue, Hanoi, or the Mekong Delta that will enrich their comprehension of those places and of Vietnam, in general. Students will be exposed to “Vietnamese Studies” currently practiced inside and outside Vietnam to realize which approaches have been employed in this interdisciplinary field, and how the field significantly varies in different geo-political, socio-cultural environments, depending on who is doing it and in which contexts it is carried out. A wide array of (re)sources for study and research will be introduced. Finally, students will have a chance to redefine “Vietnam Studies” at Fulbright University Vietnam and figure out which directions it is heading towards. This course is open to VS majors and non-majors.

offering time

Spring 23


Vietnam Studies


Vu Minh Hoang


Course code


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