Essays

Victims of War, and Now Victims of the Trump Administration

Viet Thanh Nguyen and Eric Tang discuss the deportation of Vietnamese refugees under the Trump administration in this Opinion piece for the New York Times.  What is an appropriate punishment for a crime? The plight of thousands of Vietnamese refugees convicted of crimes in the United States and now threatened with detention or deportation demands an answer… (read more)


Wesley Yang and the Search for Asian-American Visibility

Viet Thanh Nguyen discusses Wesley Yang’s collection of essays, The Souls of Yellow Folk, for the New York Times Book Review.  THE SOULS OF…(read more)

Could Asian-Americans Turn Orange County Blue?

Viet Thanh Nguyen discusses Asian-American influence in Orange County for the 2018 midterm elections in this op-ed for New York Times.  When I was…(read more)

True War Stories

Viet Thanh Nguyen writes about the Vietnam War in the special issue of the Asian American Literary Review. Reprinted in Oklahoma Humanities Magazine.  ON…(read more)

Asian-Americans Need More Movies, Even Mediocre Ones

Viet Thanh Nguyen writes an Op-Ed for New York Times about narrative plenitude and Asian-American representation in Hollywood.  If you are Asian-American, you have…(read more)

Losing My Son to Reading

Viet Thanh Nguyen shares his feelings on the independence reading provides in relation to his young son in this opinion piece for The New York…(read more)

John Kelly’s Ancestors Wouldn’t Have Fit In Either

Viet Thanh Nguyen reflects on John Kelly’s words about undocumented immigrants coming from south of the border. Originally published by The New York Times. I…(read more)

Ripping children from parents will shatter America’s soul

Viet Thanh Nguyen reflects on the Attorney General’s statement of intent to separate children from undocumented parents at the U.S. border. Originally published by The…(read more)

The blackface incidents at Cal Poly show why we need more education about racism

Viet Thanh Nguyen reflects on the blackface incidents at Cal Poly in this piece originally published by the Los Angeles Times. For the second time in a…(read more)

CANON FODDER

Originally published in The Washington Post. Books by immigrants, foreigners and minorities don’t diminish the ‘classic’ curriculum. They enhance it. In 1992, as a…(read more)

A Novelist’s Exuberant Love Letter to a Mexican-American Clan

Viet Thanh Nguyen reviews Luis Alberto Urrea’s The House of Broken Angels for The New York Times. Luis Alberto Urrea’s sorrowful and funny new novel, “The…(read more)

Author Viet Thanh Nguyen on the struggles of being a refugee in America

David Canfield of Entertainment Weekly offers an exclusive excerpt of Viet Thanh Nguyen’s introduction to The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives, to be released on April…(read more)

Learning to Listen from My Son

Originally published in the New York Times. LOS ANGELES — A bathroom at 4:45 a.m. is quiet. I try to wake at this time, three…(read more)

The Forgotten Victims of Agent Orange

This New York Times article, co-authored with Richard Hughes, confronts the lack of recognition and reparations for the Vietnamese victims of Agent Orange. Phan Thanh…(read more)

The Great Vietnam War Novel Was Not Written by an American

Viet Thanh Nguyen writes on the many Vietnamese-American works ignored by both the American and Vietnamese mainstream. This article was originally published by the…(read more)

In Praise of Doubt and Uselessness

The following article by Viet Thanh Nguyen was originally published by the Los Angeles Times. Almost exactly 20 years ago, I arrived in Los…(read more)