Abstract

This essay examines the ways in which explorations of van minh or civilization in Vietnamese radical thought of the colonial period opened up novel apprehensions of the self. It locates Vietnamese articulations of self and society in the global circulation of civilizational discourse and its redemptive, egalitarian, and transcendent yearnings. Although the turn to collectivist paths of political and social action in the 1930s forestalled the radical vision, it has reemerged in contemporary Vietnam, where questions of individual freedom and moral autonomy shape indigenous debates over the uneasy relationship of postcolonial Vietnam with the forces of globalization.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-8050
Print ISSN
1045-6007
Pages
pp. 65-83
Launched on MUSE
2004-02-11
Open Access
No
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