I think it is fair to say that Keith Taylor's new history of the Vietnamese peoples, A History of the Vietnamese, is long awaited in at least two senses. Those who were aware that Professor Taylor was working on this project were eager to see how a senior scholar would present the broad sweep of the Vietnamese past. But even those who were not anticipating this particular work must have been waiting for the first serious and detailed English-language survey of Vietnam's long history. While there exist, for example, hundreds of such surveys in English on the history of China, until now there had been no serious effort by a respected scholar to set forth a similar work for Vietnam. In short, such a work is long, long overdue, and the field is deeply in Taylor's debt for having tackled such a daunting project.

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