Southeast Asia Studies Seminar Series: “Strange but Familiar: Connected Histories between Poland and Vietnam after 1955”

Event time: 
Wednesday, March 6, 2024 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Henry R. Luce Hall (LUCE ), 203 See map
34 Hillhouse Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
Event description: 

My talk will chronicle the cultural, personal, and educational contacts between Poland and Vietnam by examining how these interactions developed over the course of the second half of the twentieth century—after decolonization, amid the Second Indochina War and against the backdrop of global socialism. Drawing on a diversity of sources from Poland and Vietnam, this talk will excavate these robust, but largely forgotten shared histories. By zooming in on new institutions, pedagogical and cultural exchanges, personal connections, and grassroots experiences, I will show how these contacts were forged and operated on various scales, involving multiple agents and shaping future trajectories. While these complex exchanges were often overtly political, they also tended to be intimate, leading to wayward encounters beyond the official public sphere and reaching far into the private sphere. Although tethered to unanticipated and often global political crises, some of these contacts—personal and institutional—proved to be enduring and continue until today.

Thục Linh Nguyễn Vũ, Harvard University/University of Vienna