Nguyễn Du Writing School

Officially founded on November 29, 1979, Nguyễn Du Writing School (NDWS) was intended for training the post-war generation of Vietnamese writers. It is somewhat the same as the Iowa Writers’ Workshop where courses in creating writing are given by resident and visiting writers. From the outset, the NDWS enjoyed a series of distinguished visitors, among them Nguyễn Tuân, Nguyễn Đình Thi, Đặng Thai Mai, Xuân Diệu, Huy Cận, Nguyễn Công Hoan, and Tô Hoài.

I’ve just found a student list of the NDWS, but it’s kind of untrustworthy. The first class (1979-1982) reportedly had more than 40 students, many of whom later became well-known poets and novelists, such as Chu Lai, Lâm Thị Mỹ Dạ, Nguyễn Trọng Tạo, Nguyễn Thụy Kha, Nguyễn Khắc Trường, Trung Trung Đỉnh, and Hữu Thỉnh. However, Dương Thu Hương is not on the list, although she is widely known as the student of the NDWS. 

This list also shows that Bảo Ninh took the third class (1986-1989), but many other sources, probably more reliable, claim that it should be the second class (1982-1986) since his magnum opus The Sorrow of War is a graduation project first published in 1987.

Tạ Duy Anh and Nguyễn Bình Phương were the students of the fourth class (1989-1992).

Photos: nhilinhblog

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