Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh

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Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh
Born 1882
Died 1936 (1937) (aged 54)
Nationality Vietnamese
Occupation Journalist Translator

Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh (1882 – 1936) was a Vietnamese journalist and translator of Western literature in colonial Vietnam. Together with François-Henri Schneider he founded the Đông Dương tạp chí (1912) as the first successful Vietnamese quốc ngữ newspaper in Hanoi.[1] The paper was technically owned by Schneider, since only a Frenchman could obtain a license to publish a newspaper.[2] Its French sister paper was France-Indochine.

Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh was a 'non-communist' nationalist moderniser who sought to renew the Vietnamese culture by adopting Western ways of life.[3] He rejected the political violence of the Restoration League, arguing in 1913 that the Vietnamese should 'use the cultural benefits of France to shut out seditious noises, so that the explosions caused by the rebels will not drown out the drums of civilization'. Vinh used the Indochina Review to criticize Vietnamese culture in a series of articles entitled 'Examining Our Defects'[4] In the 1930s, he worked together with the French and translated numerous Western literary works such as La Fontaine’s Les Fables (1668) and Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels into quốc ngữ[5] in an attempt to introduce the Vietnamese to Western culture.

Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh was also credited with devising the original set of rules for the Telex Vietnamese character encoding system.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Arthur J. Dommen The Indochinese Experience of the French and the Americans 2001 Page 27 "... daily France-Indochine (which had its counterpart in quoc ngu, the Dong Duong Tap Chi, founded in 1912 by Nguyên Van Vinh and François Henri Schneider,11 and which encouraged modernization along French lines) perhaps influenced ."
  2. ^ Understanding Vietnam - Page 71 Neil L. Jamieson - 1995 "The actual owner and publisher of all three publications was M. Francois Henri Schneider. Only a Frenchman could obtain a license to publish a newspaper. M. Schneider owned another, more successful, newspaper in Saigon, News of the ..."
  3. ^ Goscha, Christopher E. (2004). "The Modern Barbarian: Nguyen Van Vinh and the Complexity of Colonial modernity in Vietnam". European Journal of East Asian Studies. 
  4. ^ Radicalism and the Origins of the Vietnamese Revolution. Tai, Hue-Tarn Ho: Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1992, pp.28-29
  5. ^ Goscha, Christopher E. (2004). "The Modern Barbarian: Nguyen Van Vinh and the Complexity of Colonial Modernity in Vietnam". European Journal of East Asian Studies. 
  6. ^ Thu Hà (2010-09-12). "Nhớ "người Nam mới" đầu tiên" [Remembering the first "new Southerner"]. Tuổi Trẻ (in Vietnamese). Hồ Chí Minh Communist Youth Organization. Retrieved 2009-09-17.