Lifting Knowledge from a Southern Text

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Tokioka Room, Moore Hall 319
Monday (March 16, 2015) from 12:00pm to 1:30pm

The works of Li Tana and Charles Wheeler illustrate how the Nguyen lords ‘deft adaptation to the trade networks of the former Cham lands enabled them to establish a new Vietnamese region in Southern Vietnam, while George Dutton’s work demonstrates how the bureaucratic weaknesses and over-extension of the realm enabled the rise of the largest pre-colonial uprising in Southeast Asian history. These works, among others, have opened new territories of research into the history of South-Central Vietnam. This paper builds on these avenues with a close reading of newly discovered wood block prints from the Southern Realm (Quang Nam and Quy Ninh) as windows to who the translation of Sinitic values at the interstices of Cham, Sinitic, and Vietnamese cultures produced a new imagined identity, reproduced and disseminated to a Southern elite through the medium of print culture. The imagining, articulation, and reproduction of this new identity became a form of cultural authenticity for Southern Vietnamese in later centuries.


nhungtuyettranNhung Tuyet Tran is Canada Research Chair, Associate Professor in History, and Director of the Centre for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Toronto. Her intellectual interests lie at the intersection of law, religion and morality in early modern Viet Nam. She is currently working on a cultural history of Vietnamese Catholicism.

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