Viet Thanh Nguyen
University of Southern California
Humanities and Arts
Literature (Fiction, Poetry, Short Stories, Nonfiction, Playwriting, Screenwriting and Translation)
Nguyen's novel The Sympathizer (2015) won the Pulitzer Prize and worldwide acclaim for its bold reimagining of the so-called Vietnam War through the eyes of a half-Vietnamese, half-French undercover communist agent. Nguyen described The Sympathizer as the fiction bookend of a project, the nonfiction bookend of which has also drawn extraordinary attention. Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (2016)-an examination of how the War has been remembered in many countries, including the US, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and South Korea-was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Together, the two books upend our understanding of a seminal chapter in world history. Nguyen is also the author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America (2002) and The Refugees (2017), a collection of short stories, as well as the editor of The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives (2018). He is contributing opinion writer for the New York Times and a cultural critic for the Los Angeles Times.