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The Formulation of the National Discourse in 1940-45 Vietnam

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Authors
Anh, Nguyen The
Issue Date
2002
Publisher
서울대학교 국제학연구소
Citation
Journal of International and Area Studies, Vol.9 No.1, pp. 57-75
Abstract
The period of Japanese occupation fundamentally changed the Vietnamese political environment, by unleashing nationalist aspirations and causing an upsurge in political involvement on the part of Vietnamese throughout the country. The course of events during the years 1940-1945 affected thus a definite transformation of Vietnam’s society and politics. However, whereas the national image was going through a process of crystallization, diversity of ideological complexions and lack of clear-cut ideological directions, of organized structures, of definite programs of action, and of substantial mass bases generally characterized by the different groups which became entangled in the struggle against foreign domination, contrary to the Indochina Communist Party, whose success in taking advantage of the effects of the power vacuum following Japan’s capitulation on 15 August 1945 was the result of long-term revolutionary preparations involving propaganda and organizational work. Indeed, the movement leading Vietnam to independence in the so-called August Revolution followed a broadly based nationalist program, but was controlled from within by the well-organized Indochina Communist Party. In order to understand how such a program could have won wide popular support, this paper examines the different ways the national idea was formulated by the main historical actors of the 1940-45 period, opposing especially to the discourse of the old monarchical political system to the Việt Minh’s patriotic-nationalist propaganda. From this viewpoint, a thorough analysis of the Declaration of Independence of 2 September 1945 would help to point out that, while implying no unity whatsoever, at least at this stage, it was in reality a profoundly Marxist-Leninist document, in spite of the use of Enlightenment ideals and 19th century nationalism and the apparent absence of the Marxist-Leninist philosophy that the Việt Minh subscribed to
ISSN
1226-8550
Language
English
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10371/46343
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Graduate School of International Studies (국제대학원)Dept. of International Studies (국제학과)Journal of International and Area StudiesJournal of International and Area Studies vol.09 (2002)
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