image : Viet Thanh Nguyen

Viet Thanh Nguyen

Viet Thanh Nguyen's novel The Sympathizer is a New York Times best seller and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Other honors include the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Edgar Award for Best First Novel from the Mystery Writers of America, the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction from the American Library Association, the First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction, a Gold Medal in First Fiction from the California Book Awards, and the Asian/Pacific American Literature Award from the Asian/Pacific American Librarian Association. His other books are Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (a finalist for the National Book Award in nonfiction) and Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America. He is the Aerol Arnold Chair of English and Professor of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. His next book is a short story collection, The Refugees, forthcoming in February 2017 from Grove Press.

The Best 13 Books on Viet Thanh Nguyen

image Viet Thanh Nguyen

Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America (Race and American Culture)

In Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America, Viet Nguyen argues that Asian American intellectuals have idealized Asian America, ignoring its saturation with capitalist practices. This idealization of Asian America means that Asian American intellectuals can neither grapple with their culture's ideological diversity nor recognize their own involvement with capitalist practices such as the selling of racial identity. Making his case through the example of literature, which remains a critical arena of cultural production for Asian Americans, Nguyen demonstrates that literature embodies the complexities, conflicts, and potential future options of Asian American culture.
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One World Two: A Second Global Anthology of Short Stories

One World Two is the eagerly awaited follow-up to One World and another globe-trotting collection of stories. But it is more than simply an anthology of short fiction, as it contains representative literature from all over the world, conveying the reader on thought-provoking journeys across continents, cultures and landscapes.

One World Two is even more ambitious than Volume One in its geographic scope, featuring twenty-one writers drawn from every continent. Most of the stories are unique to this volume, while others are appearing for the first time in English (Egypt's Mansoura Ez-Eldin and Brazil's Vanessa Barbara). The themes and writing styles are as richly diverse as their writers' origins.

The collection is built around a loose theme of building bridges. It is interested in the human condition as a dynamic central line linking individuals, cultures and experiences: east and west, north and south, and, perhaps most importantly, past, present and future.

This book features established stars such as Edwidge Danticat (Breath, Eyes, Memory), Viet Thanh Nguyen (The Sympathizer) and Aminatta Forna (The Hired Man) and authors who are steadily building a reputation such as Fan Wu, Ana Menéndez and Daniel Alarcon.

In order of appearance, the authors are: Yewande Omotoso, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Heidi North-Bailey, Ana Menéndez, Mathew Howard, Okwiri Oduor, Desiree Bailey, Vamba Sherif, Alice Melike Ulgezer, Daniel Alarcon, Mansoura Ez-Eldin, Aminatta Forna, Nahid Rachlin, Samuel Munene, Vanessa Barbara, Ret'sepile Makamane, Fan Wu, Olufemi Terry, Balli Kaur Jaswal, Chris Brazier, and Edwidge Danticat. Edited and compiled by Ovo Adagha and Chris Brazier.

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Go Home!

“The notion of home has always been elusive. But as evidenced in these stories, poems, and testaments, perhaps home is not so much a place, but a feeling one embodies. I read this book and see my people—see us—and feel, in our collective outsiderhood, at home.” —Ocean Vuong, author of Night Sky with Exit Wounds

Asian diasporic writers imagine “home” in the twenty-first century through an array of fiction, memoir, and poetry. Both urgent and meditative, this anthology moves beyond the model-minority myth and showcases the singular intimacies of individuals figuring out what it means to belong. 

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The Sympathizer (Thorndike Press Large Print Reviewers' Choice) by Viet Thanh Nguyen (2015-10-07)

The Sympathizer (Thorndike Press Large Print Reviewers' Choice) by Viet Thanh Nguyen (2015-10-07)
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The Refugees

Published in hardcover to astounding acclaim, The Refugees is the remarkable debut collection of short stories by Viet Thanh Nguyen, winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for his novel The Sympathizer. In these powerful stories, written over a period of twenty years and set in both Vietnam and America, Nguyen paints a vivid portrait of the experiences of people leading lives between two worlds, the adopted homeland and the country of birth.

With the same incisiveness as in The Sympathizer, in The Refugees Viet Thanh Nguyen gives voice to the hopes and expectations of people making life-changing decisions to leave one country for another, and the rifts in identity, loyalties, romantic relationships, and family that accompany relocation. From a young Vietnamese refugee who suffers profound culture shock when he comes to live with two gay men in San Francisco, to a woman whose husband is suffering from dementia and starts to confuse her for a former lover, to a girl living in Ho Chi Minh City whose older half-sister comes back from America having seemingly accomplished everything she never will, the stories are a captivating testament to the dreams and hardships of migration.

The second work of fiction by a major new voice in American letters, The Refugees is a beautifully written and sharply observed book about the aspirations of those who leave one country for another, and the relationships and desires for self-fulfillment that define our lives.
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Transpacific Studies: Framing an Emerging Field (Intersections: Asian and Pacific American Transcultural Studies)

The Pacific has long been a space of conquest, exploration, fantasy, and resistance. Pacific Islanders had established civilizations and cultures of travel well before European explorers arrived, initiating centuries of upheaval and transformation. The twentieth century, with its various wars fought in and over the Pacific, is only the most recent era to witness military strife and economic competition. While “Asia Pacific” and “Pacific Rim” were late twentieth-century terms that dealt with the importance of the Pacific to the economic, political, and cultural arrangements that span Asia and the Americas, a new term has arisen―the transpacific. In the twenty-first century, U.S. efforts to dominate the ocean are symbolized not only in the “Pacific pivot” of American policy but also the development of a Transpacific Partnership. This partnership brings together a dozen countries―not including China―in a trade pact whose aim is to cement U.S. influence. That pact signals how the transpacific, up to now an academic term, has reached mass consciousness.

Recognizing the increasing importance of the transpacific as a word and concept, this anthology proposes a framework for transpacific studies that examines the flows of culture, capital, ideas, and labor across the Pacific. These flows involve Asia, the Americas, and the Pacific Islands. The introduction to the anthology by its editors, Janet Hoskins and Viet Thanh Nguyen, consider the advantages and limitations of models found in Asian studies, American studies, and Asian American studies for dealing with these flows. The editors argue that transpacific studies can draw from all three in order to provide a critical model for considering the geopolitical struggle over the Pacific, with its attendant possibilities for inequality and exploitation. Transpacific studies also sheds light on the cultural and political movements, artistic works, and ideas that have arisen to contest state, corporate, and military ambitions. In sum, the transpacific as a concept illuminates how flows across the Pacific can be harnessed for purposes of both domination and resistance.

The anthology’s contributors include geographers (Brenda S. A. Yeoh, Weiqiang Lin), sociologists (Yen Le Espiritu, Hung Cam Thai), literary critics (John Carlos Rowe, J. Francisco Benitez, Yunte Huang, Viet Thanh Nguyen), and anthropologists (Xiang Biao, Heonik Kwon, Nancy Lutkehaus, Janet Hoskins), as well as a historian (Laurie J. Sears), and a film scholar (Akira Lippit). Together these contributors demonstrate how a transpacific model can be deployed across multiple disciplines and from varied locations, with scholars working from the United States, Singapore, Japan and England. Topics include the Cold War, the Chinese state, U.S. imperialism, diasporic and refugee cultures and economies, national cinemas, transpacific art, and the view of the transpacific from Asia. These varied topics are a result of the anthology’s purpose in bringing scholars into conversation and illuminating how location influences the perception of the transpacific. But regardless of the individual view, what the essays gathered here collectively demonstrate is the energy, excitement, and insight that can be generated from within a transpacific framework.

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image Viet Thanh Nguyen

Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War

Finalist, National Book Critics Circle Award
Finalist, National Book Award in Nonfiction
A New York Times Book Review “The Year in Reading” Selection

All wars are fought twice, the first time on the battlefield, the second time in memory. From the author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning novel The Sympathizer comes a searching exploration of the conflict Americans call the Vietnam War and Vietnamese call the American War―a conflict that lives on in the collective memory of both nations.

“[A] gorgeous, multifaceted examination of the war Americans call the Vietnam War―and which Vietnamese call the American War…As a writer, [Nguyen] brings every conceivable gift―wisdom, wit, compassion, curiosity―to the impossible yet crucial work of arriving at what he calls ‘a just memory’ of this war.”
―Kate Tuttle, Los Angeles Times

“In Nothing Ever Dies, his unusually thoughtful consideration of war, self-deception and forgiveness, Viet Thanh Nguyen penetrates deeply into memories of the Vietnamese war…[An] important book, which hits hard at self-serving myths.”
―Jonathan Mirsky, Literary Review

“Ultimately, Nguyen’s lucid, arresting, and richly sourced inquiry, in the mode of Susan Sontag and W. G. Sebald, is a call for true and just stories of war and its perpetual legacy.”
―Donna Seaman, Booklist (starred review)

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Le Sympathisant (French Edition)

À la fois fresque épique, reconstitution historique et œuvre politique, un premier roman à l'ampleur exceptionnelle, qui nous mène du Saigon de 1975 en plein chaos au Los Angeles des années 1980. Saisissant de réalisme et souvent profondément drôle, porté par une prose électrique, un véritable chef-d'œuvre psychologique. La révélation littéraire de l'année.

Au Vietnam et en Californie, de 1975 à 1980

Avril 1975, Saïgon est en plein chaos. À l'abri d'une villa, entre deux whiskies, un général de l'armée du Sud Vietnam et son capitaine dressent la liste de ceux à qui ils vont délivrer le plus précieux des sésames : une place dans les derniers avions qui décollent encore de la ville.

Mais ce que le général ignore, c'est que son capitaine est un agent double au service des communistes.

Arrivé en Californie, tandis que le général et ses compatriotes exilés tentent de recréer un petit bout de Vietnam sous le soleil de L.A., notre homme observe et rend des comptes dans des lettres codées à son meilleur ami resté au pays. Dans ce microcosme où chacun soupçonne l'autre, notre homme lutte pour ne pas dévoiler sa véritable identité, parfois au prix de décisions aux conséquences dramatiques. Et face à cette femme dont il pourrait bien être amoureux, sa loyauté vacille...

Prix Pulitzer 2016, Prix Edgar du Meilleur Premier Roman 2016, finaliste du prix PEN/Faulkner, un premier roman choc.

Translation Prize 2018 de la French-American Foundation

MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, "Genius Grant", 2017

Lauréat de l'Association for Asian American Studies Award for Best Book in Creative Writing (Prose) 2017

Prix Pulitzer 2016

Prix Edgar 2016

Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2016

Prix Dayton Literary Peace for Fiction 2016

Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature (Adult Fiction) 2015-2016

California Book Award for First Fiction 2016

Prix Center for Fiction First Novel 2015

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image Thi Bui

The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives

Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Sympathizer Viet Thanh Nguyen called on 17 fellow refugee writers from across the globe to shed light on their experiences, and the result is The Displaced, a powerful dispatch from the individual lives behind current headlines, with proceeds to support the International Rescue Committee (IRC).
Today the world faces an enormous refugee crisis: 68.5 million people fleeing persecution and conflict from Myanmar to South Sudan and Syria, a figure worse than flight of Jewish and other Europeans during World War II and beyond anything the world has seen in this generation. Yet in the United States, United Kingdom, and other countries with the means to welcome refugees, anti-immigration politics and fear seem poised to shut the door. Even for readers seeking to help, the sheer scale of the problem renders the experience of refugees hard to comprehend.
Viet Nguyen, called “one of our great chroniclers of displacement” (Joyce Carol Oates, The New Yorker), brings together writers originally from Mexico, Bosnia, Iran, Afghanistan, Soviet Ukraine, Hungary, Chile, Ethiopia, and others to make their stories heard. They are formidable in their own right—MacArthur Genius grant recipients, National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalists, filmmakers, speakers, lawyers, professors, and New Yorker contributors—and they are all refugees, many as children arriving in London and Toronto, Oklahoma and Minnesota, South Africa and Germany. Their 17 contributions are as diverse as their own lives have been, and yet hold just as many themes in common.
Reyna Grande questions the line between “official” refugee and “illegal” immigrant, chronicling the disintegration of the family forced to leave her behind; Fatima Bhutto visits Alejandro Iñárritu’s virtual reality border crossing installation “Flesh and Sand”; Aleksandar Hemon recounts a gay Bosnian’s answer to his question, “How did you get here?”; Thi Bui offers two uniquely striking graphic panels; David Bezmozgis writes about uncovering new details about his past and attending a hearing for a new refugee; and Hmong writer Kao Kalia Yang recalls the courage of children in a camp in Thailand.
These essays reveal moments of uncertainty, resilience in the face of trauma, and a reimagining of identity, forming a compelling look at what it means to be forced to leave home and find a place of refuge. The Displaced is also a commitment: ABRAMS will donate 10 percent of the cover price of this book, a minimum of $25,000 annually, to the International Rescue Committee, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing humanitarian aid, relief, and resettlement to refugees and other victims of oppression or violent conflict.
List of Contributors:
Joseph Azam
David Bezmozgis
Fatima Bhutto
Thi Bui
Ariel Dorfman
Lev Golinkin
Reyna Grande
Meron Hadero
Aleksandar Hemon
Joseph Kertes
Porochista Khakpour
Marina Lewycka
Maaza Mengiste
Dina Nayeri
Vu Tran
Novuyo Rosa Tshuma
Kao Kalia Yang
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Il Simpatizzante (Italian Edition)

È il mese di aprile del 1975 a Saigon. Il mese nel quale la guerra che va avanti da tempo immemorabile ha cominciato ormai a perdere i pezzi. In una villa dalle mura ricoperte di cocci di vetro e di filo spinato arrugginito, il generale capo della Polizia Nazionale del Vietnam del Sud, colto da improvvisa insonnia, vaga tra le stanze con la faccia di un pallore verdognolo. Il fronte settentrionale ha ceduto dinanzi allavanzata dei Vietcong, gli aerei americani decollano giorno e notte con a bordo donne, bambini e orfani, e lordine ufficiale di evacuazione tarda a venire soltanto per evitare la rivolta in città.
A bordo di un C-130, con un volo coperto, il Generale si appresta a raggiungere gli Stati Uniti con la famiglia e parte dei suoi uomini. Ufficiale magro dal portamento impeccabile, il Generale crede in Dio, nella moglie, nei figli, nei francesi, negli americani e nellassoluta fedeltà del suo uomo di fiducia, il solo tra i suoi sottoposti ad abitare a casa sua: il Capitano. Non sa che il Capitano è, in realtà, una spia, un dormiente, un uomo con due facce che fotografa in gran segreto ogni rapporto e dispaccio e li invia a Man, suo addestratore tra le fila Vietcong.
Figlio illegittimo di una vietnamita e di un prete cattolico francese, il Capitano ha studiato in un piccolo college della California meridionale, spedito da quelle parti da Man con una borsa di studio e il compito di apprendere la «mentalità degli Stati Uniti», un paese che, ai suoi occhi, si rivela subito cosí scioccamente narcisista da definire tutto «super» (i supermercati, le superstrade, Superman, il Super Bowl ecc.). Animato da unautentica fede nel comunismo, rientrato in patria, ha sostenuto con tale rigore la sua parte di agente doppogiochista da risultare insospettabile agli occhi di tutti, anche a quelli di Bon, lamico di lunga data che è entrato a far parte del famigerato «Phoenix Program» della CIA.
In una Saigon in preda alla confusione, al caos e al terrore, il Capitano, il Generale e un nutrito gruppo di fuggiaschi scappano sotto la tempesta di fuoco dei Vietcong, tra una pioggia di razzi e granate che lasciano sulla pista dellaeroporto della città i corpi inerti di moglie e figlio di Bon.
Una volta a Los Angeles, nella città del futile mondo del cinema, gli orrori della guerra sembrano lontani. Ma un dilemma atroce attende il Capitano: seguire «le cose che contano», come lideologia e il credo politico, oppure lasciare prevalere le «illusioni della giovinezza», salvando la vita a Bon, lamico con cui ha sigillato un patto di sangue durante ladolescenza?
Romanzo che offre il ritratto impareggiabile di un «uomo con due menti diverse», di un «rivoluzionario» che dinanzi al terribile esito dei suoi ideali non cessa per questo di «scrutare loscurità con pensieri scandalosi, speranze eccessive e sogni proibiti», Il simpatizzante ha riscosso, al suo apparire negli Stati Uniti, lentusiasmo di critica e pubblico, vincendo il Premio Pulitzer 2016 per la narrativa e figurando come «libro dellanno» sul New York Times e i maggiori organi di stampa internazionali.

«Il simpatizzante non è soltanto un magistrale romanzo di spionaggio, ma unopera che annuncia la nuova letteratura americana del XXI secolo».

«Un personaggio memorabile con cuore e mente profondamente divisi. La mirabile descrizione che Nguyen avanza della personalità ambivalente del suo eroe ne fa uno scrittore degno di maestri quali Conrad, Greene e le Carré».
New York Times

«Abbiamo atteso a lungo il grande romanzo sulla guerra del Vietnam, e ora eccolo, è arrivato».
Vietnam Veterans of America
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The Sympathizer Hardcover – April 7, 2015

The Sympathizer is the story of this captain: a man brought up by an absent French father and a poor Vietnamese mother, a man who received his education in life and love in America, but returned to Vietnam to fight for the Communist cause. A man who is a spy and a sympathizer. A man who does not know who he really is. In this stunning and beautifully written novel of betrayal, espionage, and the legacy of the Vietnam War, Viet Thanh Nguyen explores a life between two worlds. Totally unlike the novels or films of the Vietnam War that have preceded it, and with a literary elegance and dark wit, The Sympathizer gives voice to the perspective of a conflicted subversive and idealist, examining a side of the war and its aftermath America has never seen before. Product Description: A profound, startling, and beautifully crafted debut novel, The Sympathizer is the story of a man of two minds, someone whose political beliefs clash with his individual loyalties. It is April 1975, and Saigon is in chaos. At his villa, a general of the South Vietnamese army is drinking whiskey and, with the help of his trusted captain, drawing up a list of those who will be given passage aboard the last flights out of the country. The general and his compatriots start a new life in Los Angeles, unaware that one among their number, the captain, is secretly observing and reporting on the group to a higher-up in the Viet Cong. The Sympathizer is the story of this captain: a man brought up by an absent French father and a poor Vietnamese mother, a man who went to university in America, but returned to Vietnam to fight for the Communist cause. A gripping spy novel, an astute exploration of extreme politics, and a moving love story, The Sympathizer explores a life between two worlds and examines the legacy of the Vietnam War in literature, film, and the wars we fight today. "About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
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The Sympathizer: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)

The winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as six other awards, The Sympathizer is the breakthrough novel of the year. With the pace and suspense of a thriller and prose that has been compared to Graham Greene and Saul Bellow, The Sympathizer is a sweeping epic of love and betrayal. The narrator, a communist double agent, is a “man of two minds,” a half-French, half-Vietnamese army captain who arranges to come to America after the Fall of Saigon, and while building a new life with other Vietnamese refugees in Los Angeles is secretly reporting back to his communist superiors in Vietnam. The Sympathizer is a blistering exploration of identity and America, a gripping espionage novel, and a powerful story of love and friendship.
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image Viet Thanh Nguyen

The Sympathizer

The winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as six other awards, The Sympathizer is the breakthrough novel of the year. With the pace and suspense of a thriller and prose that has been compared to Graham Greene and Saul Bellow, The Sympathizer is a sweeping epic of love and betrayal. The narrator, a communist double agent, is a “man of two minds,” a half-French, half-Vietnamese army captain who arranges to come to America after the Fall of Saigon, and while building a new life with other Vietnamese refugees in Los Angeles is secretly reporting back to his communist superiors in Vietnam. The Sympathizer is a blistering exploration of identity and America, a gripping espionage novel, and a powerful story of love and friendship.
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