Archives par mot-clé : nationalisme

Nguyễn Thái Học : Lettre aux députés français [1930]

Nguyễn Thái Học (1902-1930)

Messieurs les députés,

En équité : le droit de tout citoyen est de vouloir sa patrie libre. En humanité : le devoir de tout individu est de secourir son frère malheureux.

Que vois-je ? Depuis plus de soixante ans ma patrie est asservie par vous, Français. Mes frères souffrent sous votre domination, ma race est menacée dans son existence. J’ai donc le droit et le devoir de défendre mon pays et mes frères.

J’avais d’abord pensé atteindre ce but en collaborant avec vous. Mes échecs répétés m’ont conduit à comprendre que les Français ne désiraient pas sincèrement cette collaboration et qu’il me serait impossible de servir mes compatriotes aussi longtemps que vous serez les maîtres de mon pays.

J’ai alors, en 1927, organisé le parti nationaliste annamite [VNQDĐ] dont l’action devait tendre :

  • 1° à chasser les Français du territoire ;
  • 2° à former un gouvernement républicain annamite sincèrement démocrate.

Je me rends personnellement responsable de tous les événements politiques survenus dans mon pays depuis cette date et organisés par moi. Je suis le seul et vrai coupable, ma mort doit donc suffire. Je demande grâce pour les autres.

Ceci dit, je tiens à vous déclarer que si les Français veulent désormais occuper l’Indochine en toute tranquillité, sans être gênés par aucun mouvement révolutionnaire, ils doivent :

  • 1° abandonner toute méthode brutale et inhumaine ;
  • 2° se comporter en amis des Annamites, non plus en maîtres cruels ;
  • 3° s’efforcer d’atténuer les misères morales et matérielles en restituant aux Annamites les droits élémentaires de l’individu : liberté de voyage, liberté d’instruction, liberté d’association, liberté de la presse ;
  • 4° ne plus favoriser la concussion des fonctionnaires ni leurs mauvaises mœurs ;
  • 5° donner l’instruction au peuple, développer le commerce et l’industrie indigène…

Veuillez agréer, Messieurs les députés, l’expression de mes sentiments de respect.

Votre ennemi, le révolutionnaire,

THAI HOC.

Document cité par : Louis ROUBAUD, Viet-Nam la tragédie indo-chinoise, Paris, Librairie Valois, 1931, pp. 147-148.

NguyenThaiHoc_Lettre [pdf]

Phạm Quỳnh : Franc-Maçon francophile et nationaliste

[ndlr] Figure emblématique de l’élite vietnamienne sous la colonisation, Pham Quynh tenta une synthèse du meilleur de la France et du Viêt Nam. Cette prise de position politique inconfortable face au colonialisme brutal et au nouveau radicalisme vietnamien lui coûta la vie en 1945.

Né en 1892, bientôt orphelin, ses études le mènent à l’école des interprètes de Hanoï, dont il sort premier de sa promotion en 1908. Culturellement Pham Quynh est un métis, formé par le système occidental, il se donne une solide culture vietnamienne et chinoise. A la veille de 1914, il fait la découverte du journalisme aux côtés de son aîné Nguyen Van Vinh, directeur de la revue moderniste Dong Duong Tap Chi. En 1917, avec l’appui de Louis Marty, il crée la revue Nam Phong pour vulgariser en vietnamien les éléments fondamentaux de la culture occidentale. Parallèlement, il rédige des articles en français pour le journal France Indochine et devient chargé de cours, en 1924, à l’université de Hanoï. En 1925, Pham Quynh se fait initier. Jusqu’alors les loges indochinoises ont été réticentes à accueillir des autochtones, mais à cette date la loge « Confucius 111 » du DH vient d’être fondée à Hanoï avec des Annamites. (Ainsi pour devenir Franc-Maçon Ho Chi Minh a profité de son séjour à Paris pour se faire initier au GODF). Le Gouverneur Varenne, lui-même Franc-Maçon, se déclarant favorable à cette orientation, Pham Quynh  adhère à la loge puis à « La Fraternité du Tonkin », il sera un temps Franc-Maçon. Presque en même temps il s’inscrit à la Ligue des Droits de l’Homme. En 1932 sept des officiers de la loge DH sont Vietnamiens, l’année suivante le Vénérable est Pham Huy Luc, son ami, directeur de revue et homme politique.

Les préoccupations, que Pham Quynh exprime en loge, portent sur les sentiments anti-français qui se développent et le choc de la révolution chinoise, sur le fait qu’un modéré comme lui devienne suspect. Il se fait l’avocat de la rédaction d’une Constitution pour le pays et devient, dans le Vietnam Nord, le symbole du réformisme. Il attire l’attention sur le phénomène socio-politique qui se développe : des Vietnamiens de retour de France (étudiants, ouvriers, soldats) et de l’école française donnent des idées d’émancipation. En 1932, le jeune Empereur Bao Daï, de retour de ses études en France, fait appel à lui. Il devient, de 1932 à 1945, tour à tour : Ministre de l’Instruction Publique, Ministre de l’Intérieur et Premier Ministre. En tant que principal personnage du gouvernement impérial et son idéologue, il défend la monarchie, l’indépendance et le dialogue avec la France. Il dénonce les dangers de l’acculturation et voit la renaissance vietnamienne grâce à une culture nationale rénovée.

Le 11 mars 1945 il paraphe, avec Bao Daï, l’Indépendance du Vietnam puis, trop lié à l’ancien système, il laisse sa place à Tran Trong Kim, ancien de l’école des interprètes, enseignant et lui aussi un temps Franc-Maçon. Le 23 août 1945 Pham Quynh est arrêté et sa famille apprendra des semaines plus tard sa mort sans que les circonstances de son assassinat soient élucidées. Il avait écrit de lui-même : « Je suis un homme de transition. Sincère ami de la France, on me reproche de cacher sous ma francophilie de façade un nationalisme exacerbé. Patriote Vietnamien, on m’accuse de trahir ma patrie en pactisant avec le conquérant

Extrait de : Georges Odo, La franc-maçonnerie dans les colonies, 1738-1960, Paris, Editions maçonniques de France, Encyclopédie maçonnique, coll. Histoire, 2001.

Source : Franc-Maçonnerie / Francs-Maçons célèbres

* * *

Phạm Quỳnh (ca. 1894-1945) was a scholar, critic and translator.

He was born in Hanoi and died in Huế. One of the defining figures of Vietnamese literature, a towering model for later generations of scholars and writers, he helped to modernize the language, encouraged the writing of short stories and novels, and the anthologizing of folk poetry. He was the editor of the hugely influential journal Nam Phong, which lasted for 210 issues from 1917 until 1932.

He wrote about ca dao in 1922: “Even though our oral literature has not been recorded in any book, I will insist that it is a very rich one, richer, perhaps, than any other country. Although it is not without its crudeness, this oral literature is also profoundly resonant; one can say that the wisdom, morals, and aesthetics of our common folks are all contained within these idioms.” Warning Vietnamese writers against composing in French, he wrote: “In borrowing someone’s language, you are also borrowing his ideas, literary techniques–even his emotions and customs.” After centuries of writing in Chinese, the Vietnamese had produced no Li Po, he pointed out, and writing in French, it is unlikely that they will ever produce a Victor Hugo or a Anatole France. After reading a story in French, Phạm Quỳnh suggested, as an exercise, to try retelling it to one’s wife in Vietnamese.

He translated tirelessly, from Maupassant, Pierre Loti, and Alfred de Vigny, among many others, wrote travel pieces, scholarly articles and books about everyone from Voltaire, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Descartes, to Confucius. His principle books include Văn minh luận, Ba tháng ở Paris, Văn học nước Pháp, Chính trị nước Pháp, Khảo về tiểu thuyết, Lịch sử thế giới, Lịch sử và học thuyết Voltaire, Phật giáo đại quan, Cái quan niệm của người quân tử trong Đạo Khổng and the five-volume Thượng Chi Văn tập.

He was also active politically, advocating gradual Vietnamese independence within the French union. From 1932 onward, he worked with emperor Bảo Đại, a weak figure tolerated by the French. Phạm Quỳnh’s compromised stance towards the French, his lack of militancy, is revealed in this famous saying: “As long as [Nguyễn Du’s epic poem] Kim Van Kieu remains, our language remains, our nation remains.” On August 23, 1945, he was captured by the Việt Minh, along with Ngô Đình Khôi (brother of Ngô Đình Diệm, future president of South Vietnam) and his son. All three were killed on September 6, 1945. Phạm Quỳnh’s body was only found 11 years later, in Hắc Thú [Black Beast] forest, near Huế.

On the centenary of his death, the publisher An Tiêm (Paris) released a collection of his writing, Kỷ niệm 100 năm ngày sinh Phạm Quỳnh (1892~1992), edited by Phạm Thị Hoàn.

Linh Dinh started this entry.

Source : Viet Nam Literature Project

Vietnamese Political Studies and Debates on Vietnamese Nationalism – by Tuong Vu

Does a Vietnamese nation exist? Is it an ancient entity, or a modern invention? Is national consciousness to be found only among political elites, or do the masses also hold such sentiments? What is the nature of Vietnamese nationalism: is it a psychological sense of patriotism, an anticolonial ideology, or a quest for political power? What is the Vietnamese national character? What is the relationship between Vietnamese nationalism and communism? This review of the state of Vietnamese political studies (1) in the United States since the 1950s finds that these questions have preoccupied scholars of Vietnamese politics and political history more than any other topic.

Over the last fifty years, the field has undergone two growth spurts, one in the mid 1960s and the other since the mid 1980s. The first took place as the United States deepened its involvement in Vietnam, while the second occurred at the end of the Cold War. At both turning points the fieldexpanded rapidly, both in quantitative and qualitative terms, reflecting the profound impact of political events on scholarship. At the same time, the growth spurts foreshadowed shifts in the substantive debates on the Vietnamese nation and nationalism. In particular, before the mid 1960s debates were implicit and mild in tone. Diverse views existed, but pessimism about the Vietnamese nation and doubts about its unifying power and moral character were pervasive. Despite the belief in the modern origins of nations that was prevalent among social scientists at the time, in Vietnamese Studies only a few believers in Vietnam as an ethnic nation existed. At the same time, some adopted an alternative concept that defined the Vietnamese nationality not along the primordial-modern dimension but as a communal identity to be found at the village level. And as for Vietnamese nationalism, most analysts viewed it as contradicting and being threatened by communism.

As the war escalated and the field experienced its first growth spurt after the mid 1960s, the tone of debate became increasingly combative and its character more polemic. The earlier pessimism was replaced in this new, more sophisticated scholarship by an optimism about the Vietnamese nation. This nation was now seen primarily as an ethnic group whose identity had been shaped over the centuries out of repeated resistance to foreign invasions. There was also a new belief in the possible affinity for and benefit of an alliance between nationalism and communism. Reflecting an important trend in the social sciences and the normative concerns of analysts, Vietnamese nationalism was now conceptualized simply as anticolonialism. Overall, the new scholarship of this period made major contributions to the understanding of Vietnamese politics, but it was also highly partisan—that is, its arguments and evidence were often deployed in not-so-subtle ways to justify certain policy positions. While no scholarship can ever be free of ideological biases, these were more pronounced and sometimes explicitly proclaimed in works written during this period.

Since the early 1980s, as the field gathered steam for a second expansive phase, the debates have become less polemic and ideological. New ways to conceptualize the Vietnamese nation have emerged that challenge earlier thinking. The existence and power of the Vietnamese nation are no longer assumed or denied in a simplistic manner, while the processes by which the nation was created or sustained receive a new scrutiny. In sync with developments in social science theory, the Vietnamese nation is now primarily viewed as a modern social construct or cultural artifact. Vietnamese nationalism is treated not only as resistance to foreign rule but also as a cover for power politics. The affinity between communism and nationalism is rejected. A welcome development is the more direct engagement of Vietnam scholarship of this third period with broad theories in the social sciences. By productively applying these theories to old questions or by using Vietnamese cases to criticize them, current scholarship gives the topic a renewed salience and offers new vistas for future exploration.

This review is organized into three parts, corresponding to the three periods the field has experienced. In each part, I will begin by discussing political events, theoretical trends in the social sciences—especially regarding the study of nations and nationalism—and trends in related fields such as Asian or Southeast Asian Studies. The bulk of each section is devoted to the debates on questions about the Vietnamese nation and nationalism. In the conclusion I will speculate about future trends in the field, which appears to be moving away from these questions. Three areas of potential fruitful research are suggested, including changing Vietnamese loyalties in the era of globalization, the ethnic dimension of the modern Vietnamese nation, and the relationship between nationalism, socialism, and state building in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV) during the war.

Read more on pdf

Ref. : Journal of Vietnamese Studies 2: 2 (August 2007), pp. 175-230.

Tuong Vu (Visiting Research Fellow, Project on Democracy and Development; September 2011–June 2012). Vu is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Oregon.  His research interests include state formation and development, the politics of nationalism, the role of ideology and identity in domestic and international conflicts, and the role of communist ideology in the Vietnamese revolution.  He is the author of Paths to Development in Asia, South Korea, Vietnam, China, and Indonesia (2010) and coeditor of Dynamics of the Cold War in Asia: Ideology, Identity, and Culture (2009). While at Princeton, Vu will work on two projects: a book that examines the role of ideology in the Vietnamese revolution as a case of radical politics in the periphery, and a paper that examines the role of capital and coercion in the formation of modern East Asian states. Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley.

See Tuong Vu profile