VIETNAMESE STUDIES INTERNET RESOURCE CENTER E-MAIL NEWSLETTER,
WINTER 2005

EDITOR: MARK E. PFEIFER, PHD, E-Mail: vstudies@yahoo.com

ABOUT THE VIETNAMESE STUDIES INTERNET RESOURCE CENTER: The Vietnamese Studies Internet
Resource Center (www.vstudies.org) is an online source of comprehensive information related to the cross-
disciplinary field of Vietnamese Studies. It includes an online journal: The Review of Vietnamese Studies,
an online research article library, extensive subject bibliographies and detailed U.S.census data.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: REVIEW OF VIETNAMESE STUDIES 2004-05 ISSUE

The Vietnamese Studies Internet Resource Centre (VSIRC)(www.vstudies.org) is accepting submissions of
articles for the fourth annual volume of its online academic journal - The Review of Vietnamese Studies.
Articles related to the adaptation of the Vietnamese diaspora, Vietnamese culture, and Vietnamese history
are especially welcome. Articles will be published in PDF format in a special section of the VSIRC website
dedicated to the new on-line journal.

Papers should be submitted by June 30, 2005. Articles will be reviewed for publication by Mark E. Pfeifer,
PhD, editor of the VSIRC website. Authors may submit their papers for possible inclusion in the Review of
Vietnamese Studies by e-mail attachment to vstudies@yahoo.com. Authors should include a list of
references cited, if any, as well as a personal biography listing academic interests, academic background,
and professional affiliations. To view past issues of the Review of Vietnamese Studies visit vstudies.org

RECENT DISSERTATIONS AND THESES IN VIETNAMESE STUDIES

(Most of these graduate studies may be ordered at www.umi.com)

David A. Biggs. (2004). Between the rivers and tides: A hydraulic history of the Mekong Delta, 1820--1975
(Vietnam). PhD Dissertation, University of Washington. This historical study of the water environment and
water projects in the Mekong Delta examines exchanges between engineers and local people that defined
regional identities tied to the surrounding water landscape over time

Veronica Lily Chiu. (2004). Alter/native: Imagining and performing the native woman in Francophone and
Vietnamese literature. PhD Dissertation, University of Michigan. Using the models of the native proposed
by such postcolonial scholars such as Homi Bhabha, Gayatri Spivak, and Rey Chow, this dissertation
attempts to find a new model of the native woman as she is represented in postcolonial Francophone
Vietnamese literature and contemporary literature from Vietnam.

Thanh Van Duong. (2004). Family, community-based social capital and educational attainment during the
doi moi process in Viet Nam. PhD Dissertation, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. This empirical study
attempts to gain a better understanding of educational attainment in developing countries by examining
social factors in order to determine whether or not family- and community-based social capital affect
Vietnamese students' educational attainment during the on-going renewal process in Viet Nam.

Kathleen A. Harrell. (2004). Identity development of Mexican and Vietnamese immigrant students: A study
of adult learners in community colleges. PhD Dissertation, University of Houston. This qualitative study
examined the identity development of five first- and second-generation adult Mexican and Vietnamese-
American community college students. Its purpose was to understand their perceptions as to how they
constructed their identity as they moved through their school experiences; how they interpreted their
experiences and the categorical references that educators and societies placed on them as they were
engaged in that construction, and how they interpreted their cultural adaptations and educational
attainments.

Trang T. Henderson. (2004). Crossing cultural participation borders: Vietnamese immigrant students in an
American science classroom. PhD Dissertation, University of Washington. Participating in American
science classrooms is often difficult for immigrant students because of differences in expectations for
active participation. In this dissertation, the author studied the adaptation of Vietnamese immigrant
students to unfamiliar types of participation. The researcher used an American science classroom as a
case study to look at the process of crossing cultural participation borders, created by differences in
participation expectations between the American science classroom and Vietnamese science classrooms.
The author observed seven focal students in their science classroom throughout one academic semester
at a newcomer school. Through a series of student and teacher interviews, and classroom observations of
the American science classroom, the author discovered differing cultures between the American science
classroom and the Vietnamese science classrooms. From these differences between the two cultural
environments, the researcher categorized types of participation that were familiar and unfamiliar to the
Vietnamese immigrant students.

Lam N. Huynh. (2004). The effects of mantra meditation and religious orientation on psychological distress
and self-actualization among Vietnamese American Buddhists. PhD Dissertation, Alliant International
University, Los Angeles. Since Vietnamese refugees are an often underserved population who face a
myriad of psychosocial difficulties, research and intervention must attend to their specific needs and
available resources. In an attempt to do so, this study examined the factor structure of the Religious
Orientation Scale (ROS) and the correlation of mantra meditation, religious orientation, and the interaction
thereof to psychological distress and self-actualization. Participants were 169 Buddhists between the ages
of 18 and 91 from a community center and a temple.

Uyen Kim Huynh. (2004). Health promotion curriculum development for Vietnamese refugees: Pretest and
posttest health confidence. PhD Dissertation, Antioch University, New England Graduate School.

Bot L. LeDynh (Le Dinh Bot). (2004). Preservation of the Nom heritage: Keyboard input methods for
presenting the Vietnamese Quoc Ngu' and Chu' Nom on multilingual Web pages. PhD Dissertation,
George Mason University. Most Vietnamese historical and literary works of the last two millennia were
written in two languages, Vietnamese and Chinese. Many centuries of warfare, political instability, and
harsh climate have severely damaged the Vietnamese heritage. Designing a keyboard input method for
typing Vietnamese (a Latin alphabet-based script of the Vietnamese language) is a necessity in the
preservation and dissemination of the heritage. This dissertation (1) describes the extent to which the
Vietnamese Quoc Ngu’ and Chu’ Nom scripts are currently presented on multilingual web pages, (2)
presents a method for drawing fonts of these scripts’ characters, (3)suggests keyboard input methods for
typing both Vietnamese scripts, and (4) designs a course for adult education programs at community
colleges, which enables a layperson to draw and to type the scripts of any languages.

Tuan D. Lee. (2004). Barriers to health care access among Vietnamese refugees in Tarrant County,
Texas. MPH Thesis, University of North Texas Health Sciences Center at Fort Worth. The refugee
community is the most vulnerable community due to existing medical conditions without proper treatment
and there are many barriers for them in accessing health care. This study seeks to determine the nature
of these barriers that keep the Vietnamese refugees from accessing the health care system in Tarrant
County.

Julie H.D.T. Nguyen. (2004). Exploring indigenous approaches to women's well-being in Viet Nam:
Negotiating gender. PhD Dissertation, The University of British Columbia. Using an interdisciplinary
approach, this dissertation focuses on the cultural aspects of women's well-being in Viet Nam in the
context of achieving more effective and equitable human development. The concept of culture refers to
the traditions, which have been formed and transformed over thousands of years, and which are mainly
characterized by the intertwining of conflicting doctrines of indigenous culture. This study seeks to: (a)
describe some of the major historical and cultural factors affecting gender relations; (b)examine the
effectiveness of national and international efforts in negotiating and adapting to the gender and
development approach; and (c) evaluate the implications of current socio-economic and cultural changes
for the future well-being of women and female children.

Tuong Hung Nguyen. (2004). The structure of the Vietnamese noun phrase. PhD Dissertation, Boston
University. This dissertation is a study of the Vietnamese Noun Phrase from a generative perspective. It
provides an account of word order possibilities within the Noun Phrase across several language families of
Southeast Asia, with a focus on Vietnamese. The proposal is that the different word orders attested in
Noun Phrases are derived by applications of syntactic movement from a single underlying Determiner
Phrase (DP) structure. This proposal constitutes a significant departure from prior analyses of Vietnamese
and other related languages.

Elizabeth Olmstead. (2004). Bui Doi: Vietnamese Amerasian experiences in Vietnam and the United
States. MA Thesis, Texas Southern University. Discriminated, ostracized and unwanted because of the
origins of their births, Amerasians have suffered racial hatred to an unimaginable extent. In the United
States and Vietnam, they have existed as a people without a country, children without a homeland and
individuals without a culture. This is an investigation into the experiences and realities of the Amerasians.
By utilizing primary and secondary sources: interviews, government documents, books, articles, and
periodicals, this investigation examines the nature of the United States' involvement in Vietnam, the race
relations and oppression in each society, as well as the experiences of Amerasians in both countries. This
investigation yields an understanding of the discrimination, oppression and dislocation suffered by
Amerasians in Vietnam and the United States.

Christine L. Schwenkel. (2004). Iconographies of war: The transnational politics of memory and visuality in
contemporary Vietnam. PhD Dissertation, University of California, Irvine. This dissertation explores the
impact of globalization and capitalism on historical memory and iconographic modes of representing the
American war in contemporary Vietnam. It is based on multi-sited ethnographic fieldwork conducted in
northern, central, and southern Vietnam at various times in 1997, 1998, and 2001, in addition to sixteen
continuous months in 1999 and 2000. Research took place at public sites of national memory that have
been transformed into transnational tourist spaces, such as museums, war memorials, art and
photography exhibits, and former battlefields reinvented for touristic adventure.

Nealon Mark Shelley. (2004). The invisible Vietnamese: Ethnic community and assimilation in Milwaukee
(Wisconsin). PhD Dissertation, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. In an effort to understand and explain
the various processes refugees undertake in adapting to life in an urban setting, this study focuses on
Vietnamese persons and families in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin metropolitan area. Extensive interviews
were conducted with Vietnamese families and various service providers to the community including Mutual
Assistance Associations, churches, social service agencies and police. Census data is analyzed to provide
a background for the study. A brief history of the Vietnamese in Milwaukee (assembled mostly from
newspaper accounts) is presented, and the narratives of individuals and families, both early (1975) and
later (after 1990) arrivals are recounted. The re-formation of the refugees' social identities is explored.
Issues of gender, generational, occupational and educational roles are discussed.

Hoa Tran. (2004). Collective memory and identity: Creating a sense of home. PhD Dissertation, Temple
University. This dissertation is based on four years of ethnographic fieldwork from 1997 to 2001 with
members of the Vietnamese refugee and immigrant communities in which the author explores their
histories, divergent politics and diverse experiences in urban community life within and beyond the Greater
Philadelphia area as the researcher traced people's social networks. The study focuses on how urban
institutions determine the needs of communities and target particular groups; how the leadership of
community organizations respond to institutional mandates while meeting the needs of its constituencies;
how individual members of the Vietnamese communities construct collective identities fusing historical
memories and transnational ties; and how new cultural practices and meanings become politicized as
memories of the past are lived in the present.

John Kha Tran. (2004). Preaching in exile: A Vietnamese American Catholic mission. Doctorate of Ministry
Dissertation, Aquinas Institute of Theology. Vietnamese Americans suffer a deep sense of loss, politically,
socially and culturally. Learning to adapt, to adjust, and striving to achieve and to survive, in America, they
are American citizens but not Americans. In Vietnam, they are Vietnamese but not Vietnam's citizens. This
exilic experience of Vietnamese American Catholics needs to be addressed in preaching. The Hebrews'
exilic experience is helpful for Vietnamese Americans to voice their felt loss. This project seeks to help
preachers to re-present the catastrophe and to reconstruct the paradigms of meaning that employs both
scriptural and traditional Vietnamese imagery to identify the presence of God in their cultural as well as
exilic experiences, to convey a message of Christian mission.

Nhung Tuyet Tran. (2004). Vietnamese women at the crossroads: Gender and society in early modern Dai
Viet. PhD Dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles. This dissertation examines the experiences of
women in early modern Vietnamese society: the sixteenth through eighteenth centuries. It is the first full-
length historical study of Vietnamese women written in English, Vietnamese, or French. This study
Vietnamese society challenges the paradigmatic framework of Vietnamese gender history by
demonstrating how constructions of Vietnamese womanhood emerged out of colonial legal discourses and
are easily contradicted by the historical evidence. Contrary to the existing scholarship, this dissertation
argues that women's private lives were severely circumscribed by code and local custom. Restrictive
structures that organized their private lives led women to seek out mechanisms that ensured de-facto
authority in over property, sexual, and religious life, ironically giving them important public roles in village
life.

Phillip Khanh Van Trinh. (2004). Toward a doctrine of sin in the Vietnamese context: Elements in the
dialogue between the Vietnamese indigenous perceptions and Christian teaching on sin by missionaries.
PhD Dissertation, Graduate Theological Union. This dissertation explores the many elements in the
dialogue between Vietnamese indigenous perceptions and the Christian understanding of sin used by the
missionaries. The dissertation begins by raising the questions: how has the Vietnamese cultural
appreciation of sin developed from early time (Fifth century BC onward) to its contemporary expressions?
And how has the Christian understanding of sin affected this Vietnamese way of understanding sin? Next,
the thesis analyzes and critiques the historical efforts of Christianity in its dialogue with the Vietnamese
perceptions of sin. Finally, the dissertation suggests various potential fruitful areas and avenues to
continue the dialogue.

Thanh Dinh Vo. (2004). Free trade, rural livelihoods and sustainable development: A comparative study of
corn production in Mexico under NAFTA and rice production in Vietnam under new trade liberalization. MS
Thesis, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. Trade, livelihoods
and environmental protection are three important topics in the current debate on sustainable development
policies and academia. This thesis develops its own conceptual framework for the analysis and use
qualitative/quantitative methodologies with a multi-disciplinary approach to explore the interaction between
free trade policies and rural livelihood decision-making. It investigates the social and environmental
impacts of the interaction between NAFTA and corn production in Mexico.

Angie Wong. (2004). MS Thesis, San Jose State University. Occupational stereotypes of Asian Americans.
The majority of past research conducted on the topic of occupational stereotyping focused on Asian
Americans in general with minimal research on the Asian American subgroups. Therefore it is important to
examine if occupational stereotyping exists among Asian American subgroups, specifically Chinese
Americans, Vietnamese Americans, and Asian Indian Americans. It is also important to determine whether
there are gender differences in occupational stereotypes across these three subgroups. Multiple mixed
factorial ANOVAs were used to study whether occupational stereotyping exists among the Asian American
subgroups. It was hypothesized that Chinese, Vietnamese, and Asian Indian Americans, as well as women
in the three groups, would be rated different in terms of perceived likelihood of success in certain
occupations. Results show no indication of any difference in perceived likelihood of success for any
subgroup or women. Implications for counselors and organizations are discussed.