Cover image for The Vietnam War : a history in documents
The Vietnam War : a history in documents
Young, Marilyn Blatt.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
175 pages : illustrations, 3 maps ; 26 cm.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DS557.7 .Y677 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



The Vietnam War tells the story of one of the most divisive episodes in modern American history through primary sources, ranging from government documents, news reports, speeches, popular songs to memoirs, writings by Vietnam veterans (including coauthor John Fitzgerald), and poetry byVietnamese and Americans on matching themes. The book begins in the 19th century when Vietnam became a French colony, and traces the insidious route by which the United States became involved in a war on the other side of the world.

Author Notes

Marilyn B. Young was born Marilyn Blatt in Brooklyn, New York on April 25, 1937. She received a bachelor's degree in history from Vassar College in 1957 and a doctorate from Harvard University. In 1968, her dissertation became her first book The Rhetoric of Empire: American China Policy, 1895-1901. She also wrote The Vietnam Wars, 1945-1990. She was a longtime professor at New York University. She died from complications of breast cancer on February 19, 2017 at the age of 79.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

School Library Journal Review

Gr 7 Up-This "documentary history" provides a social and political context for the conflict, with no military history and little coverage of the actual fighting. Instead, it focuses on the official documents, speeches, quotes, media commentary, and memoirs that trace the history of French and, later, American involvements in South East Asia. The documents are skillfully tied together by brief text that gives good background information. The authors primarily credit gross miscalculations on the part of American policy makers, such as John Foster Dulles and Robert S. McNamara, in helping lead the country into this conflict and are often critical of the United States politicians. A concluding section recounts a Vietnamese woman's return visit to her homeland long after the war, describes the changes in U.S./Vietnamese relations and attitudes, and looks at the role of the war in limiting the expansion of Communism. Related topics, such as the Civil Rights movement, Vietnam Veterans against the War, and the Kent State shootings, are covered, and ample information on Ho Chi Minh is included. The book is well balanced in showing both sides; the tragedy of the war i+s underlined by truly awful statistics on the amount of munitions used, the destruction of Vietnam, and the loss of life. Good-quality, black-and-white photos and illustrations are plentiful and informative. Comparable in style and reading level to John M. Dunn's A History of U.S. Involvement (Lucent, 2001), this excellent title could be used in conjunction with William Dudley's The Vietnam War: Opposing Viewpoints (Greenhaven, 1997).-Jeffrey A. French, Euclid Public Library, OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.