The Sword and the Pen: Life Writings by Militant-Authors of the Việt Minh and Front de Libération Nationale (FLN)

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Hoang, Phuong
Orlando, Valerie K
This dissertation examines four life writings by militant-authors of the Việt Minh and Front de la Libération Nationale (FLN): Ngô Văn Chiêu’s Journal d’un combattant Viet-Minh (1955), Đặng Văn Việt’s De la RC 4 à la N 4: la campagne des frontières (2000), Si Azzedine’s On nous appelait fellaghas (1976), and Saadi Yacef’s two-volume La Bataille d’Alger (2002). In describing the Vietnamese and Algerian Revolutions through the perspectives of combatants who participated in their respective countries’ national liberation struggles, the texts reveal that four key factors motivated the militants and led them to believe that independence was historically inevitable: (1) a philosophical, political, and ideological framework, (2) the support of multiple segments of the local population, (3) the effective use of guerrilla and psychological warfare, and (4) military, moral, and political assistance provided by international allies. By fighting for the independence of their countries and documenting their revolutionary experiences, the four militant-authors leave their mark on the world using both the sword and the pen.