The Vietnam War

The Vietnam War

An Intimate History

Book - 2017
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More than forty years after it ended, the Vietnam War continues to haunt our country. We still argue over why we were there, whether we could have won, and who was right and wrong in their response to the conflict. When the war divided the country, it created deep political fault lines that continue to divide us today. Now, continuing in the tradition of their critically acclaimed collaborations, the authors draw on dozens and dozens of interviews in America and Vietnam to give us the perspectives of people involved at all levels of the war: US and Vietnamese soldiers and their families, high-level officials in America and Vietnam, antiwar protestors, POWs, and many more. The book plunges us into the chaos and intensity of combat, even as it explains the rationale that got us into Vietnam and kept us there for so many years. Rather than taking sides, the book seeks to understand why the war happened the way it did, and to clarify its complicated legacy. Beautifully written and richly illustrated, this is a tour de force that is certain to launch a new national conversation.
Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2017
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780307700254
Characteristics: xiii, 612 p. : ill., maps (some color) ; 29 cm
Additional Contributors: Burns, Ken 1953-
Novick, Lynn


From Library Staff

A vibrantly photographed companion to the multi-part PBS film examines the Vietnam War's role in debates that continue in today's world, drawing on extensive interviews with contributors at all levels in America and Vietnam to explain why and how the war happened as well as its complicated legacy.

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IndyPL_JamesM Jul 01, 2019

The companion volume to the 10-part PBS series by Ken Burns, the book plunges us into the madness of a war which still haunts us after half a century. Like the tv series, the book follows the progress of the war in fascinating detail. There are interviews and profiles of dozens of people (on both sides) who played a part in the conflict. There are also hundreds of photos throughout to enhance the overall story and help us to understand why the war evolved as it did and the legacy that was left for us to ponder.

Dec 29, 2017

Excellent one volume history of the war that began with the French War against the Viet Minh. Much more detail, obviously, that what could be covered in the TV series. As an infantryman in the Central Highlands from 1969-1970, the series and this book brought back lots of memories. After returning from this war, I thought the real crazy times in our country would never again return, but I was wrong per the 2016 election through today.

Jul 11, 2017

If the miniseries is as good as this book, we'll have another Ken Burns classic to enjoy soon. This book has a lot of excellent first-person narratives from both sides of the conflict combined with solid historical scholarship. It is well done and a nice companion piece.


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