ENGLISH WRITING 2 (Online Course)
Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking

The Vietnam Conflict

Fall 2006

Dean John K. Swensson

Homepage: http://lore.fhda.edu/faculty/swensson/index.html

Course Research Page: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/ewrt2vn.html

Streaming Web Video Course Orientation: rtsp://dastream1.fhda.edu/LanguageArts/ewrt2orientation.rm
[Click here to download a free version of RealOne Player to watch the course orientation on your PC at home]

"This quarter in memory of of our friend SP4 Jack Smith; USA, Ret, of ABC News."

Course Description

Students use a variety of media components and participate in online discussions with the instructor and other students. You will learn the techniques and practice of expository and argumentative writing based on personal experience, observation, research, critical reading, and critical thinking. Students are required to have access to a computer with e-mail and World Wide Web capabilities to post assignments and participate in course activities.

Prerequisites: EWRT1A


Be prepared to spend a minimum of 15 hours each week studying course materials, working and collaborating on assignments and projects, and participating in class activities.
  1. Attend the First Class Meeting.
  2. Complete all assigned readings in the books, handouts and instructional syllabus.
  3. View a minimum of one film checked out from video store or the DeCillis Collection - For the Fall of 2006 we will use Oliver Stone's PLATOON.
  4. Write and post four paragraphs on course material to the class forum, as assigned.
  5. Write and turn in two short papers, a mid-term examination, one research paper,
    and a take-home essay final exam.


After completing the readings and writing assignments, and participating in the class forum and listserv, you should be able to:

A. READ CRITICALLY (including visual images and other non verbal texts)

  • Distinguish between direct perception and inference, between surface, "literal" reading and interpretation.
  • Recognize the interdependence of language and thinking.
  • Analyze relationships, organize information, and apply concepts.
  • Recognize and evaluate alternate points of view, values, and meanings.
  • Discover connections, patterns, and analogies that cut across conventional classification schemes and intellectual domains.
  • Learn to use the web for research and to assist in your reading of texts. The specific search engine that I recommend for scholarly purposes is an intelligent Search Engine known as Google. It is found on the Internet at http://www.google.com/.


  • Recognize the interdependence of reading and writing.
  • Practice writing as a complex, cyclical process of discovery, planning, drafting, and revising.
  • Articulate analyses and interpretations.
  • Formulate arguments.
  • Synthesize analysis and personal experience, moving from a critical examination of others' ideas and values to a critical examination of one's own.
  • Learn to use email and posting to a BBS, or Bulletin Board System.
    If you do not already have an email account, you may get a free, web-based email account at http://www.gmail.com

Fall '06 Course Objectives

  1. To learn to write an effective, well-organized, and supported research paper, argumentative theme and a variety of paragraph forms.
  2. To examine the relationship between the Vietnamese culture and the Vietnamese experience in the early 1960s, and American culture and the American experience.
  3. To critically examine a work of fiction, the classic Vietnamese folk tale, THE TALE OF KIEU (K).
  4. To critically examine two works of non-fiction that are commentaries on the Viet Nam conflict and the aftermath.

Getting Started

Obtain Your Books and Materials

Purchase them at the De Anza College Bookstore, or online, at: http://books.fhda.edu/fhda/.

  1. Du, Nguyen. THE TALE OF KIEU, trans. Huynh Sanh Thong. Yale: Yale University Press, 1983.
  2. Halberstam, David. THE MAKING OF A QUAGMIRE. Revised Edition. New York: Knopf, 1988.
  3. Swensson, John. Swensson's Argumentative Apocalypse, 12/00 Ed. De Anza College Printing Services.
and obtain one of the following two choices of books:
  • Hayslip, Le Ly. WHEN HEAVEN AND EARTH CHANGED PLACES. New York: Plume Books, 1993. OR:
  • Pham, Andrew. CATFISH AND MANDALA. New York: Picador, 1999.

Attend the First Class Meeting

First Class Meeting Attendance is required! Students have the opportunity to meet with the instructor and receive specific information about how to proceed through the course. If you are on a waiting list you also must attend the First Class Meeting in order to add the class.

English Writing 2

First Class Meeting Session: Wednesday, September 27, 2006

5:30PM - 8:00PM, ATC 103

Last Day to Add the Class (if space is available): Wednesday, September 27. To add the class after the First Class Meeting day you must contact the instructor by email. Students will not be reinstated in the class after being dropped for non-attendance.

Validate Your DASB Card

DASB Student Card

Developing Your Study Plan

Study Tips

Get Organized
A three-ring binder with dividers is a great tool to use to store the Homepage, file your notes, and keep track of any materials mailed to you during the course.

Preview Your Textbooks
Scan the Table of Contents, major chapter headings and subheadings of your textbook.

Develop a Study Schedule
Many students report that they benefit from a regular study schedule. Rough-out a schedule for when during the week you'll read your textbook assignments, complete your writing assignments, communicate with your instructor and classmates.

Keep Good Notes
Create a good set of notes for each unit of instruction. By doing this you will be able to review your material without "cramming" everything in at the last minute.

Avoid Interruptions
Let your family and roommates know about your study schedule, and ask that you not be disturbed while you are studying.

Ask for Help if You Need It
Contact your instructor when you have questions about the material or assignments.


Computer Hardware:
It is required that you have access to a computer that provides you with your own email address and with which you can send and receive daily email and browse the World Wide Web.

Writing Text:
The writing text, Swensson's Argumentative Apocalypse, contains material on how to write effectively.

Instructional Units are:
Unit 1: Course Introduction/Orientation
Unit 2: Technology Orientation
Unit 3: The Body Paragraph
Unit 4: The Argumentative Theme
Unit 5: Logic
Unit 6: Documentation/Grammar Guide
Unit 7: Student Success
Unit 8: Multiculturalism
Unit 9: Editing Skills
Unit 10: Analyzing & Writing About Literature

The Writing Text address is: http://lore.fhda.edu/faculty/swensson/index.html
Dates of the Viet Nam Conflict are at: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/vnhist.html The Course Research Page is at: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/ewrt2vn.html

Email Tip: If you have not done so already, take the time to create a signature line in your email software. A signature line contains your name and any other contact information you'd like to include in your e-mail messages (e-mail address, phone #, etc.). It is attached to the bottom of your e-mail messages automatically when you send them.

Go to: http://deanza.etudes.fhda.edu/ and select: Fall 2006, and click on EWRT2 Swensson Online

Peer Editing Groups

Each student will be assigned to a five-person peer editing group. Using the address-book function of your e-mail software you will each create a mini-listserv for your group. You may receive other assignments to be accomplished at the Peer Editing Group level throughout the quarter. We will not do peer editing through ETUDES.

Weekly Assignment Schedule

Week One: September 25 - 29

Sign in to ETUDES: Go to
http://deanza.etudes.fhda.edu and select appropriate quarter. Click on Swensson, EWRT2, online. Attend the First Class Meeting. Review all classroom material and assignments in order to familiarize yourself with course requirements. Study three items this week:

(1) Unit 10 of the homepage, "Analyzing and Writing about Literature," and,

(2) Robert Olen Butler's short story "Mr. Green," found originally in the 1993 Pulitzer Prize winning
http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/green.html, and,

(3) A very powerful piece of short non-fiction about the war, the Prologue to Joe Galloway and Lt. Gen Hal Moore's WE WERE SOLDIERS ONCE AND YOUNG. A great students will read this entire book. Do not be constrained by the course minimums or by my low standards. :-)

Week Two: October 2 - 6

This week you start to use the writing tools, and submit three items. By Tuesday: Complete the "Your Biography" assignment. The Bio requirements are:

Answer these six questions IN CONSIDERABLE DETAIL (first impressions count), and by these answers your classmates will know you.

1. What is your claim to fame?
2. In what town do you live?
3. What is your current occupation and place of employment?
4. What is your major and to where are you planning on transferring?
5. (Optional) If you are willing to share your phone number so that other
students may call you, please post it here.
6. Why are you taking this course?

By Wednesday: Complete the analysis of The Prologue to WE WERE SOLDIERS ONCE AND YOUNG. While this is ungraded, you may rest assured that your classmates and your teacher, will read your analysis. This is an emotional response, a textual response, or a logical response. Is this good writing or is it fantasy? What makes it good or bad? Feel free to respond critically in any fashion that you choose. You may wish to consult the excellent website for context: http://www.lzxray.com/prolog.htm


Click rtsp://dastream1.fhda.edu/LanguageArts/SoldiersPrologue.rm to watch the RealOne Player version (for multiple bandwidths).

rtsp://dastream2.fhda.edu/LanguageArts/SoldiersPrologue.mov to watch the QuickTime version for Broadband.

Click rtsp://dastream2.fhda.edu/LanguageArts/SoldiersPrologue56k.mov to watch the QuickTime version for modem users.

Click here to download a free version of RealOne Player to watch the Galloway video on your PC at home.

Click here to download a free version of QuickTime to watch the Galloway video on your MAC at home.

THEME 1. By Friday: Complete the MR. GREEN body paragraph Theme One assignment which is detailed in the "Assignments" Section of the Course shell at ETUDES (50 points). See also the web page at: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/green.html.
Week Three: October 9-13

Study the following portions of THE TALE OF KIEU: Preface, The Historical Background by Alexander B. Woodside, the Introduction, and pages 1 - 67.

Note the introduction to the story appears on pp. 1 - 9, and that Kieu's first love, Kim Van Trong, first appears on p. 9. Kieu and Kim's story goes from pp. 9 - 67. Also note that you only have to read in one language, so the assignment is only half as long as it appears. You are, of course, welcome to study the poem in both English and Vietnamese. You are welcome to read ahead; this poem is so exciting that you may not wish to put it down.

The Tale of Kieu Visit the Kieu website, and read the lecture
notes that introduce the story. The web address is:

Attend a meeting Wednesday, October 11 to discuss the quarter-long Research Paper. Meeting will be at the DeCillis Viet Nam Conflict Collection, second floor, front of The Learning Center (Library on De Anza Campus) from 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM. The specific assignment is in Week 11, below.

Week Four: October 16-20

Study Unit 4, "The Argumentative Theme" on the homepage. You have a paper due week after next, and an optional peer editing meeting next week.

In week three you will also be assigned to a five-person study group. Contact each person via telephone and/or email. Using the address-book function in your email software, construct an address for your study group. In week 4 you will study the Thuc Ky Tham portion of KIEU from page 67 - to the first couplet at the top of Page 113. Consult with the other members of your group--you may info me if you like--about the meaning of this portion of the story. I will send study questions by the Forum, and may require graded group responses. You are encouraged to trade outline or drafts of Theme 1 with other members of your group. A group may actually share an outline -- the Thesis, Topic Sentences, and evidence could be identical but you must keystroke your own paper.

By Friday, post to the Forum a minimum 200 word biography of one of the following characters from:
THE TALE OF KIEU: Kim Trong, Thuy Van, Dam Tien, Scholar Ma, Thuc Ky Tham, Miss Hoan (Mrs Tham), Giac Duyen, or Tu Hai. Your biography must show what the character does throughout the work--yes that will require your reading ahead. What do you know about the character and how do you know it?
(50 points)

Week Five: October 23 - 27

Finish your study of KIEU by studying Part III, Tu Hai and the reunification of Kieu and Kim, pp. 113 - 167. Study Unit 9, "Peer Editing" in the homepage.

Note: Because this is EWRT 2, I assume you know how to do parenthetical notes and Works Cited in accordance with the MLA, Modern Language Association, convention. You should have learned that skill in EWRT 1A and or 1B. Nothwithstanding, you may wish to study Unit 6 "Documentation/ Grammar Guide" in the homepage.

Attend required peer editing meeting on Monday, October 24, from 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM in ATC 103. Recommend you bring, at minimum, an outline (See Unit 4 -- an outline has four and only four parts to it) which responds to the Theme 2 assignment.

THEME 2. Analyze how Nguyen Du uses an element of literature to develop a theme in THE TALE OF KIEU, or if you wish to push yourself to an even higher level, argue whether "The Tale of Kieu is Immoral," a hypothesis advanced by a critically thinking, good student in this course. If you choose this route -- in addition to using some definition of moral/immoral -- use the Toulmin model of first acknowledging the opposition -- see Unit of the homepage. That is to say, in your first body paragraph, you want to assume that the opposite of your position is true. If you believe this work to be immoral, in your first body paragraph you should advance the arguments for the morality of the work.

If you believe it to be a moral work, and that is your thesis, in your first body paragraph you must advance the arguments that would cause one to believe it to be an immoral work. In either case you will need at least two body paragraphs to offset the first negative paragraph or vice versa. (We are obviously talking Comparison/Contrast here--see Unit (subject-by-subject). No matter which approach you choose, think small. If you choose character as the element of literature, recommend you NOT write about the central character of KIEU--that is just too unrestricted. Deal with a minor character--and NOT the character you wrote about on the Forum--or restrict yourself to a very limited aspect of Kieu's personality.

In another example, if you wish to write about imagery, limit yourself to a particular type of imagery: nature imagery, imagery of smell, weather imagery, etc. You may also choose to do a close reading of a limited, but significant portion of the text, using quotations and summary to support your assertions. NO PLOT SUMMARY!!!!!! The class has already read the book. Feel free to use the listserv to ask questions or offer comments, critical or otherwise, about this assignment. Minimum 750 words, with parenthetical notes and Works Cited. In your Works Cited include a statement summarizing with whom you worked and for how long. Below your final copy, paste ONE of the peer edited copies that you received from your group. (In the Works Cited you will tell me who else peer edited in your group).
(100 points)

Email a draft to your group for peer editing. Use all caps to peer edit, and return the paper to the original author with your comments and critique in ALL CAPS.

Week Six: October 30 - November 3

Study David Halberstam's THE MAKING OF A QUAGMIRE. You should finish reading this by Wednesday of this week. QUAGMIRE, supplemented by other works of your choosing, will assist you in responding to the research paper requirement. Strongly suggest this is a good time to review the Critical Dates of the Viet Nam conflict at: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/vnhist.html and the downloadable powerpoint in the Course shell.

Theme 2 due on Tuesday.

Week Seven: November 6 - 9

Mid Term on TMOQ this week: DUE DATE SATURDAY. Post short essay on the Forum and answer 20 questions in the "Tests" portion of ETUDES. You may only enter the test once, and will have two hours to complete it.

Study Unit 5, "Logic" in the homepage to include links to pages on Induction, Deduction, and Fallacies. This must be read online in order to reach the links which are an essential part of Unit 5. Pay particular attention also to the summary of Huxley's "The Method of Scientific Investigation"; it contains the essence of what I want you to know about Induction and Deduction. Consult any other references that you wish to examine to aid in your study of these three aspects of logic. I suggest using the Google Search engine at www.google.com and put in the words "inductive logic."

Honor VETERAN'S DAY on 10 November.

Week Eight: November 13 - 17

LOGIC QUIZ due Thursday. After studying Unit 5 and the links, write ten questions on logic and post them to the Forum. Email the answers to your instructor at swenssonjohn@deanza.edu. The questions may be true-false, multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, or short essay. This assignment may be done in your peer editing group; it will best be accomplished that way. If you choose to do a group submission, list the names of all members of the group who should receive credit and I will assign the same grade to each named member of the group. Once a group has posted their questions to the forum, class members will respond to the questions in threaded messages. You MUST respond to at least one quiz from another group. The correctness of your answers to others' quizzes will not be graded, but your participation will.
(40 points)

Week Nine: November 20 - 22

Study your third book this week: Andrew Pham's CATFISH AND MANDALA or Le Ly Hayslip's WHEN HEAVEN & EARTH CHANGED PLACES.

Research Paper meeting on Monday 20 November, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM, at the DeCillis Collection, Learning Center, 2nd Floor. Bring a topic, an outline, or a rough draft research paper and join us.

Week Ten: November 27 - December 1 *** Work on your Research Paper!!!! ***

Extra Credit (10 points) Attend Maxine Hong Kingston's reading from her new collection VETERAN OF WAR, VETERAN OF PEACE at De Anza College on Wednesday, 29 November. Details TBA.  Before you come watch (will be available for download from De ANZA ItunesU) my 1994 interview with Maxine entitled "Preventing Wars a Thousand Years from Now."

Week Eleven: December 4 - 8
Research Paper due date is in ETUDES. Penalty for late papers.
(150 points)

EWRT2 RESEARCH PAPER: Critical Thinking about the Viet Nam Conflict

Size: Minimum 2000 words with 6 references including at least one reference from the Internet and one reference from the Apocalypse, Unit 5, Logic. Posting, hard copy, web page, or email acceptable. If you include pictures and appendices, hard copy or web page may be your medium of choice. The medium is not important; the quality of the research and the argument will decide the grade. Early on in the quarter you should decide on a topic that interests you, and your choice of topic will drive your selection of optional books and movies during the quarter.

The joy of research comes from restriction, narrowing down to a very small topic, and researching deeply and imaginatively into it, and thinking deeply about it. You then organize an argument and document it, following the principles of Units 3, 4, 5, & 6 of the Apocalypse.

I encourage you to peer edit another paper, and have your own paper peer edited, according to the principles in Unit 9. For those of you who live in the area, we have a wonderful collection of 2000 books (and magazines and 600 videotapes) on the Viet Nam Conflict in the DeCillis Collection, 2nd floor of the Learning Center. I will REQUIRE you to post your research paper topics in the Forum --where we cann all read them and my and your responses to them.  Details TBA

Mr. Paul DeCillis: EWRT2 Class Research Assistant

Find a topic, do some research, narrow that topic from your evidence, research more narrowly and then organize an argument. Also see the research topics on the Vietnam Conflict Research Portal found on the Internet at: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/ewrt2vn.html.


A. Find one argument in Martin Luther King's seminal antiwar sermon "A Time to Break Silence," and argue the reliability (See Unit 5 for this definition-an argument is reliable when we are sufficiently convinced of its truth to believe it or act upon it.) of that argument. Examples might be MLK's claim that Ho Chi Minh's land reform was benevolent, that the US set up "concentration camps," or that the poor bore a disproportionate share of the burden of the war. Some Vietnamese students have used their grandparents as sources on land reform-think imaginatively. For the sermon see: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/king.html.

B. Analyze a major work, again using outside references in addition to that work. Examples of major, outside works, are included in the Supplemental Reading List for the course, such as:

* Caputo's A RUMOR OF WAR
* Baritz' BACKFIRE
* Prochnau's ONCE UPON A DISTANT WAR (The media in VN)

C. Do an analysis of ONE of the ten links (see the Overview Power Point Presentation on the Vietnam Conflict in the Classroom in ETUDES) to Viet Nam enumerated in Loren Baritz' BACKFIRE. Or, using those reasons why we did what we did and Baritz' tripartite scheme that says the US goes to war because of its mythology, its reliance on technology, and its bureaucracy, attempt to answer a question already raised by a student in this course: "When should the US go to War?" Or starting with Baritz' notions about technology, examine the function of the helicopter in DISPATCHES-make connections between and among. QUAGMIRE may well be a source in ANY paper for this course, or KIEU, or H&E or C&M or PA.

D. Argue a contribution of a cultural group to the Viet Nam Conflict. Examples might include Women in Viet Nam, Hispanics in Viet Nam, African-Americans in Viet Nam, Filipinos, Puerto Ricans, Koreans, or Native Americans. It will, of course, be necessary to RESTRICT within this topic say to Nurses, the PHILCAGV (Philippine Civic Action Group, Vietnam), or the Lone Mountain Apaches.

E. Examine the role of the Media in Viet Nam. There are hundreds of available sources on this topic, but some which come immediately to mind are ONCE UPON A DISTANT WAR, QUAGMIRE, DISPATCHES, THE GREEN BERETS; there are many books that address this topic in the DeCillis Research Book Collection.

F. Select any limited topic of interest to you about the Viet Nam Conflict and submit (via email) a written outline of your argument. I will be glad to help you with sources; that process can start as soon as you begin to think about a topic. Email me @ swenssonjohn@deanza.edu.

One example of Process:
One morning I was reading a detailed chronology of the early years of American involvement in a book published in 1965. There I read that on 15 November, 1963, "a US military spokesman in Saigon reports that 1000 servicemen will be withdrawn from Viet-Nam, beginning December 3" (Raskin and Fall 393). I had always thought that this decision was Top Secret and contained within National Security Memorandum 263, and would have been declassified after the off year election. Recall that Diem was assassinated on 1 November, Kennedy on 22 November. Kennedy, who was a Democrat, was in Texas campaigning and his decision to withdraw troops was classified so that he would not be accused of being soft on Communism. An examination of this critical period and decision would make an interesting research paper. Oliver Stone made a movie with his hypothesis (JFK). What is yours? Well, you would have to do some initial research. I would start with books on JFK's involvement in Viet Nam. I would also go to the WEB. Note how small my area of focus is. There is great JOY in doing narrow research. It is how we generate new knowledge.

One quarter I had a student who did a research paper on what contributed to the American massacre at My Lai. She did original research, much of it by email, with historians, writers, Viet Nam Veterans, and others. Much of the research was open to the class, on the listserv. In her final paper she disagreed with a major author who had sent her his thoughts on why My Lai. It was a splendid paper. Your will be too-if you find a small topic that creates passion. I will certainly take papers on the antiwar movement in the US, or Japan; I will even take papers on 'Hanoi Jane' Fonda.

And if you have a relative who served in the Vietnam Conflict (or lived in Vietnam during "The American War") see me about doing a first person interview.




NOTE: you must incorporate the works from the course into your papers, as discussed above. And ALL of your research MUST be documented in accordance with the principles of good documentation discussed in Unit 6. Any student who passes off the work of others as her/his own will receive an F on the paper. I have failed students in the past for this reason. I put your web work into search engines. I encourage you to work with each other, even though you are writing separate papers. In your Works Cited (See Unit 6) include a statement regarding with whom you worked and for how long.

Do NOT even cause me to question your work. Stay Honest!!! -- JKS

Week Twelve: December 11 - 15 (Finals Week)

The Final Exam will be issued NLT the Friday before it is due. The Final Exam will be a short essay question, selected from three or more questions. Collaboration encouraged but must be documented.

Final Exam is due by Thursday at 12 noon. No late final exams will be accepted!
(100 points)

Peer Editing Meetings

Optional Peer Editing Meetings have been scheduled just prior to due dates on some of your essays. During these meetings you may meet with the students in the other distance learning sections to edit each others' papers. We also have two optional meetings on the Research Paper, both held in the DeCillis Collection in the Library.


The new English Writing Lab (with MAC's and PC's), rooms ATC 102 and 103, the Listening and Speaking Lab in ATC 304, and the Open Media Lab in the basement of Learning Center West are all available for your use, as are other labs around campus. De Anza College really is "The Most Wired" Community College!"   You may also obtain an ONLINE TUTOR from the tutorial center. Drop in help on your papers is available from the new Writing & Reading Center (WRC) in AT 309.


Due dates for each written assignment are listed on the Weekly Assignment Schedule. All written assignments must be turned in as indicated on the Assignment Schedule.

Testing and Grading

Withdrawal Procedures

[Provided by the Distance Learning Center]
If you fall behind in your course work contact your instructor for assistance right away. If it becomes necessary to withdraw from the course, you have many available options:

To drop through the STAR system: Call the STAR system (408-777-9394).
1. Press 1 for De Anza College.
2. Enter the Term number.
3. Enter your Social Security number.
4. Enter your 4-digit PIN number.
5. Follow the voice directions.

To come to campus and drop in person: Turn in the drop slip for processing at the Admissions and Records Office or the Distance Learning Center.

To Drop by telephone or Internet: Contact the Distance Learning Center at (408) 864-8969 to drop over the telephone or use the Internet registration system at De Anza College to drop online: https://regserv.fhda.edu/da-reg.html. Students who do not complete the first assignment or otherwise contact the instructor will be dropped from the course.

Refund Deadlines: You are eligible to receive an enrollment fee refund only if you withdraw from your course prior to the second Friday of the quarter.

Final Grades

Final Grades are based are the following points:
Theme 1, "Mr. Green" & Kieu Bio Para
each 50 points
Theme 2, "Kieu" 100 points
Logic Quiz (forum-group grade) 40 points
Mid-Term on QUAGMIRE 40 points
Research Paper 150 points
Theme 6, Final Exam 100 points

Note: Assignments and their point value may change during the term at the instructor's discretion.

Academic Integrity
Students who submit the work of others as their own or cheat on exams or other assignments will receive a failing grade in the course and will be reported to college authorities. In this regard I have a very easy method of checking papers copied in part from web sources w/o attribution, and I fail students who do this. There is no reason not to document your work, and the use of outside sources for research is imperative. I am confident that you will do the right thing.

Final Grade Scale: [I do not use plus or minus grades]
A = 90 - 100%
B = 80 - 89%
C = 75 - 79%
D = 70 - 74%
F = below 74%

To access final grades through the STAR system, after Finals Week:
1. Call the STAR system (408-777-9394).
2. Press 1 for De Anza College.
3. Enter the term number.
4. Enter your social security number.
5. Enter your 4-digit PIN number.·
6. Follow the voice directions for obtaining your final grades.
7. They will be read to you.

To access final grades through the Internet: Go to the following Internet address: TBD

Assistance Directory

Instructor Office Hours
By appointment. I am here all day everyday that the school is open.
My office is in L11. See the Campus Map.
Email me or call me at 590-4430 to set up an appointment.
Come by anytime.

Instructor Contact Information
Office Location: L11

Office Telephone: (408) 590-4430

FAX Number: (408) 257-9591

Email Address:
Research Portal:
When leaving your instructor a voice mail message, leave your name and phone number and indicate when it is most convenient for your call to be returned. Please speak slowly and clearly.

Counseling Support

Laurel Torres, a full-time De Anza College counselor, will be available to assist students in this class with academic and personal counseling.

Office Location: Counseling Department, Student and Community Services Building
Appointment Phone: (408) 864-5400
Office Phone: (408) 864-8781
Email: torreslaurel@fhda.edu

De Anza College Resources

A. Robert De Hart Learning Center (Library): http://www.deanza.edu/library/
Circulation Desk: (408) 864-8761
Reference Desk: (408) 864-8479
Media Lab: (408) 864-8850

Admissions and Records http://www.deanza.fhda.edu/admissions/contact.html
Main number: (408) 864-5300
STAR System: (408) 777-9394, (650) 917-0509

De Anza College Bookstore
Main number: (408) 864-8701
Texts by Telephone: (408) 864-8907

Campus Main Information
(408) 864-5678

Campus Security
(408) 864-5555

Counseling Appointment Desk

(408) 864-5400

Distance Learning Center
Main number: (408) 864-8969
FAX number: (408) 864-8245

Photo ID Office
(408) 864-8350

Tutorial Center
(408) 864-8682


Map of Viet Nam at http://www.asiatravel.com/vietmap.html

All of the following books are available in the DeCillis Collection, 2nd Floor, Learning Center (Library):

Michael Herr's DISPATCHES (The most powerful book I have ever read)

James Webb's FIELDS OF FIRE (Classic combat novel by the former Secretary of the U.S. Navy)

Neil Sheehan, A BRIGHT SHINING LIE (The ONE volume to read if you are only going to read one. The Pulitzer Prize Winning story of John Paul Vann.)

____________, AFTER THE WAR WAS OVER

William Prochnau's ONCE UPON A DISTANT WAR. David Halberstam, Neil Sheehan, Peter Arnett -- Young War Correspondents and their Early Vietnam Battles

The Pentagon Papers

Winnie Smith, AMERICAN DAUGHTER GONE TO WAR. (A beautiful story of a nurse with PTSD, by a close friend of ours)

Keith Walker, A PIECE OF MY HEART (Women in Viet Nam)

Charley Trujillo
, SOLDADOS (Hispanics in Viet Nam)

Wallace Terry, BLOODS (African-Americans in Viet Nam)

Loren Baritz,
BACKFIRE (Super, somewhat left wing history of American Cultural imperatives that led us to Viet Nam)

Anything by Robert Olen Butler, Phil Caputo, or Larry Heineman


ALL OF THE ABOVE and 600 other videos on Viet Nam are now located in The DeCillis Collection, 2nd Floor of the Learning Center, are also recommended:
  • Burt Lancaster in GO TELL THE SPARTANS. A movie about the early days of the advisory effort, circa 1963. Contains a lot of Americana.
  • CBS 5 Volume History Series
  • Pierre Schoendorfer, THE ANDERSON PLATOON, which won an Emmy and an Oscar for Best TV Documentary and Best Documentary of 1967. The story of an African-American West Point classmate of mine, Joe Anderson, whose exploits are also documented in Wallace Terry's BLOODS.

Other Viet Nam Links on the WEB:
The honor winning (awarded by the House of Representatives page on Viet Nam) student research portal may be found at the following address: http://www.deanza.edu/faculty/swensson/ewrt2vn.html

  • Yahoo Search, VN Cultural Page.
  • Women in Viet Nam by Marilyn Knapp Litt is at www.illyria.com/vnwomen.html.
  • The Vasser Viet Nam Page at vietnam.vassar.edu. This is a seminal page for the study of the conflict, the country, and its culture. It contains links to history chronologies, material for teaching and learning organized by categories.
  • Remembrance. This page is very encompassing; it contains links to many other sites of educational importance regarding the conflict.

American Flag Bar
Copyright © 2006 John K. Swensson. All rights reserved.