To fully understand the complexity of ideological commitments in Vietnam between 1945 and 1975, it is useful to return to the 1930s, when the attraction of the Vietnamese nationalists for the Fascist European regimes led a number of them to publicly celebrate the figure of Adolf Hitler. Within the context of the Popular Front in France and a certain political openness in Indochina, the intellectual and organizational turmoil of the nationalist parties gave substance to a doctrine nourished by Western models but that nevertheless remained uniquely Vietnamese. This article addresses the question of the “fascist temptation” of the prewar nationalist Đại Việt parties, which is rarely addressed by historiography.
The Lessons of Yên Bái, or the “Fascist” Temptation: How the Đại Việt Parties Rethought Anticolonial Nationalist Revolutionary Action, 1932–1945
François Guillemot is a historian and researcher at the CNRS. He is in charge of the documentation on Vietnam at the Institute of East Asian Studies (IAO, ENS de Lyon). He is the author of Dai Viet, Independence and Revolution in Vietnam: The Failure of the Third Way, 1938–1955 (Les Indes Savantes, 2012) and Vietnamese Women in the Civil War, 1945–1975: The Other Half of the War (Les Indes Savantes, 2014). He is coauthor with Agathe Larcher-Goscha of The Colonization of Bodies:From Indochina to Vietnam (Vendémiaire, 2014), and he recently published Vietnam, A Fractured Nation (La Découverte, 2018). He is also co-coordinator of the geomatic project “Virtual Saigon” (http://saigon.virtualcities.fr/), and for his research he runs two academic blogs: “Guérillera” (http://guerillera.hypotheses.org/) and “Mémoires d’Indochine” (https://indomemoires.hypotheses.org/).
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François Guillemot; The Lessons of Yên Bái, or the “Fascist” Temptation: How the Đại Việt Parties Rethought Anticolonial Nationalist Revolutionary Action, 1932–1945. Journal of Vietnamese Studies 1 August 2019; 14 (3): 43–78. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/vs.2019.14.3.43
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