ISBN: 9788776940997

Going Indochinese: Contesting Concepts of Space and Place in French Indochina


Christopher E. Goscha

2013, 163 pp, 15x23 cm.

  • A well-written and interesting study of the formation of the modern Vietnamese, Laotian and Cambodian nation-states.
  • Confirms the accusation that the Vietnamese communists were expansionists trying to establish an Indochinese federation.
  • Goscha’s innovative concept of space has a wider applicability far beyond the time and place he describes.

Why, Benedict Anderson once asked, did Javanese become Indonesian in 1945 whereas the Vietnamese balked at becoming Indochinese? In this classic study, Goscha shows that Vietnamese of all political colours came remarkably close to building a modern national identity based on the colonial model of Indochina while Lao and Cambodian nationalists rejected this precisely because it represented a Vietnamese entity. Specialists of French colonial, Vietnamese, Southeast Asia and nationalism studies will all find much of value in Goscha’s provocative rethinking of the relationship between colonialism and nationalism in Indochina.

First published in 1995, the revised edition of this remarkable study is augmented with new material by the author and a foreword by Eric Jennings.

About the Author

Christopher Goscha is Associate Professor of International Relations and Southeast Asian History at the Université du Québec à Montréal. He has published widely on cultural, social, political, and diplomatic aspects of colonial Indochina and the wars for modern Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

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