I was invited to speak at an innovative event on translation and creative expression organized by the scholar Catherine H. Nguyen from the Committee on Degrees in History and Literature and the Committee on Ethnicity, Migration, and Rights at Harvard University. Together with poet-scholar Quan Tran, we shared our scholarship and arts practice. I spoke about my scholarly research and its intersections with artistic expression and personal history. It was a refreshing and radical opportunity to speak honestly about my ‘historian-artist’ identity and diverse body of work–from research essays and teaching on Vietnamese history to film-poetry on translation and feminist performance art.
I recently delivered a talk to 150 college students at Middlesex college through the Asian Studies Development Program. I was encouraged to prepare a talk which spoke to diverse students who might not have a background on Asian history. In preparing for the talk, I took a long time reflecting on the simple question, “Why study the history of colonial Indochina.” In the talk I explain three reasons:
- It is important.
- I am constantly learning and unlearning.
- It is hard.
This paper was presented at the 13th Annual Singapore Graduate Forum on Southeast Asian Studies on July 25, 2018 at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore.
Presentation title: Reading and Misreading: From Temple of European Knowledge to Public Space of Vietnamese Modernity and Social Life, 1919-1941
Please cite all images and parts of the paper to Cindy A. Nguyen
Video of Presentation:
This talk examines the transformation of library reading in colonial Vietnam from a symbol of French modernity to an everyday practice of Vietnamese modernity and social life. Focused on the 1920’s and 1930’s Central Library Reading Room in Hanoi, I demonstrate the ways in which Vietnamese students, urban readers, and administrators challenged and redefined the meaning of the library into a Vietnamese space of public sociability, self-learning, and global knowledge.
Rather than get lost in the semantic battle of defining disciplines (What is/are the digital humanities?), this presentation explores how we as humanists can use data to help us think through our humanities questions, evidence, and argument. Drawing from ‘digital’ and ‘data science’ methods of experimental design and operationalizing, I shared my data science project on the library of congress collection of Vietnamese materials.
This talk was part of the “Texts as Data—Data as Texts” Seminar and Workshop at Yonsei University in Seoul on January 12, 2017.
I recently had the opportunty to present my research and research methods at my Fulbright host institution, Vietnam National University – Social Sciences & Humanities University (Đại học Quốc gia Hà Nội – Trường Đại học Khoa học Xã hội và Nhân văn). The audience included professors, lecturers, researchers, and students from the department of history and libraries and information, senior professors on libraries, and a few archives personnel from the Hán-Nom research institute (Viện nghiên cứu Hán nôm).
This past spring our team of awesome dh-ers at Berkeley put together the 2015 Berkeley DH Faire. Here is the quick poster my collaborator Amy Zou (Cognitive Science & Linguistics) put together.
My Berkeley Digital Humanities Working Group (BDHWG) Co-convener and friend, Camille Villa, wrote this great recap of the event by on the DH@Berkeley blog:
DH Community Gathers for 3rd Berkeley Digital Humanities Faire
by Camille Villa, 15 Apr 2015
On April 7th and 8th, Berkeley’s digital humanities community gathered to share research and celebrate an exciting year of forging new collaborations.