Viet Thanh Nguyen

arrow10 Comments

  1. Alexa
    May 18 -

    My class is reading your book, and tbh it actually is killing me. I don’t understand what’s happening I’m on like chapter 15 or 16 and I’m so very confused. Could you please tell me about Sonny and Bon.

  2. Irene Mahler
    Apr 24 -

    I finished reading The Sympathizer right before it won the Pulitzer. So glad so many others agree with me that it’s an excellent book. However, I’m puzzled as to why you describe the Major as “crapulent” when he wasn’t described as a drunk. His one “fault” was that he was fat! Why not the corpulent Major?

    • admin
      Apr 24 -

      “corpulent” is fat, but “crapulent” is to indulge excessively in food and drink. It’s a key distinction. But crapulent does also bring up echoes of crap and corpulent.

      • Dan Le
        Apr 25 -

        Congrats Viet on Pulitzer! Amazeballs for VietnAmericans everywhere.

      • Irene
        Apr 25 -

        Thanks for your speedy and enlightening reply. We’re discussing The Sympathizer at my (25 yr.old) book club tonight. What distinction do you draw between crapulent( indeed a more evocative and colorful word than corpulent) and crapulous? Do you consider them interchangeable?

  3. Dan
    May 19 -

    The whole use of the FFC/Auteur device to expose the failings of American perspective/ representations made through art is a delicious bowl of Pho on a cold winter day. Great to chat and meet up with you last night. To read an author that also lived that era/time of post war diaspora is a wondrous thing. To have that story be so well written, intelligent and funny..Du Ma!! (in a good way).

    • admin
      May 19 -

      thanks, Dan! It was very nice to meet you. Good luck with your play!

  4. James R. Miller
    Apr 27 -

    Looking forward to the book. I just read your OpEd piece published in the NY Times and was very impressed by your observations. As a retired Marine who went to Viet Nam 4 times, my one observation was that the biggest mistake made by the U.S. Government and the U.S. forces was the fact that they never got to know the people they were fighting for. All they saw was the people they were fighting against. With that limited view they wound up with a very jaded outlook on the reason and purpose for their presence there.

    • admin
      Apr 27 -

      Thanks for your comment, Mr. Miller. I agree that most Americans never really got to know the Vietnamese, of any side. It seems we’re repeating that mistake today in the Mideast.

      • James R. Miller
        Apr 28 -

        Repeating history seems to be a trend. The politicians first action is to see which way the political wind is blowing and then act accordingly. The troops are poorly educated on the customs, habits and religions of the host nation or of the adversary. Without this knowledge the are ill prepared for their mission. I was fortunate that I went to Vietnamese language school before I went to Vietnam and continued my education on the area and people after training. I think it prepared me for the time spent there and I came back with a much different outlook on what was going on from the other Soldiers and Marines I have talked to.

Leave a Reply