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tuannyriver

website & blog of Tuan Hoang, Pepperdine University

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Vietnamese diaspora

Song of war #2 – Đêm Nguyện Cầu (Night of Prayer)

Belief in God tends to be strong for people living amid warfare. It is hardly a surprise then that prayer finds its way into music written during war.  It was surely the case with popular music in South Vietnam.

Since this is the week of Christmas, it is worth mentioning that one the most popular South Vietnamese albums is filled with prayer.  It is the third album of the fine series Sơn Ca (Birdsong), and the title is simply Giáng Sinh: Tình Yêu và Hòa Bình: Christmas: Love and Peace.  It features some of the biggest names in the Saigon music scene at the time: Thái Thanh, Khánh Ly, Thanh Lan, Giao Linh, Lệ Thu, Anh Khoa, etc.  (A recording from Elvis Phương would have completed this A-list.)

Continue reading “Song of war #2 – Đêm Nguyện Cầu (Night of Prayer)”

Initial thoughts on “Terror in Little Saigon”

Grading and other obligations kept me from watching this documentary when it was first shown on PBS last week.  But I read the written narrative on the ProPublica website (which isn’t a transcript of the documentary but shares the same materials), and finally watched the documentary online last night.  Here are some thoughts after watching it.

Continue reading “Initial thoughts on “Terror in Little Saigon””

Twenty Vietnamese songs on war and refugees

Bài lời Việt theo sau bài tiếng Anh. Hai bài hao hao nội dung nhưng không giống hẳn. The Vietnamese portion follows the English. I cater each language to different readers and they aren’t entirely the same.

April 30 was of course the climax of the fortieth anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War and the beginning of mass Vietnamese migration to the U.S.  But there’s still a lot of the anniversary year left.

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April 30, 2015 in Little Saigon, Orange County

Tomorrow is the first day of classes at my institution, and I will continue to honor this anniversary by posting about Vietnamese music related to war and refugees throughout the fall semester and into the spring semester.

KEEP READING!

Starting point for a literary history of Vietnamese in the U.S.

What did the first waves of Vietnamese refugees in America think about themselves? What was their mindset regarding their place in the world?  Is it possible to write a coherent literary history of their experience?

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Cover of the book under discussion, next to a collection by Thái Tú Hạp published three years later ~ Source: nguoi-viet.com

The search for answers can take different directions and have different starting points.  In my opinion, it isn’t a bad idea to begin with a collection of poetry, essays, memoirs, and fiction entitled Tuyển Tập Thơ Văn 90 Tác Giả Việt Nam Hải Ngoại 1975-1981: Selected Poetry and Prose from Ninety Vietnamese Writers Abroad, 1975-1981 (Missouri City, TX: Văn Hữu, 1982). KEEP READING!

Conference report: Vietnamese in America since 1975

Posted on VSG on April 14, 2015

11150887_769683229793570_161372729725463775_nConference report: “Vietnamese in America Since 1975: History, Identity, and Community,” Occidental College, April 11, 2015

On this day, a dozen of scholars in history, religion, and the social sciences gathered at Occidental College for meals and conversations.  KEEP READING!

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