Spring 2020

America and Vietnam

Listed in: History, as HIST-459


Vanessa Walker (Section 01)


[US/TE] This seminar will trace the path and nature of the United States' involvement in Vietnam from World War II to the fall of Saigon in 1975 and its aftermath. It will examine U.S. policy in the context of Cold War foreign relations and how U.S. policy responded to the decolonizing Third World and the perceived danger of communist expansion and control in Southeast Asia. The seminar will explore the various pressures and influences on American policymakers, the nature of the war, and its effects on Vietnam and the United States. It will also stress Vietnamese perspectives on the conflict and analyze how Vietnamese history and culture shaped interactions with the United States, the Soviet Union and the global community. Finally, the course will spend significant time on the conflict's broad impact on U.S. society and popular culture, as manifested through music, film, and literature. One class meeting per week.

Limited to 18 students. Not open to first-year students. Spring Semester. Professor Walker.

If Overenrolled: Priority to Amherst College, history majors, then by class year.


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Spring 2014, Fall 2015, Spring 2018, Spring 2020