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Film screening, panel discussion to explore many perspectives of Vietnam War conflict

August 30, 2017 1:40 PM
My lai
Dr. Michael Butler will be sharing his and his students' experiences in Vietnam, as part of the upcoming event. Pictured: Site of the My Lai massacre

Flagler College’s Dr. Michael Butler, along with WJCT and Florida Humanities Council, will host a film screening and panel discussion on the new documentary “The Vietnam War” on Wednesday, Sept. 6 at Flagler College.

Butler, a professor of History, recently led a study abroad trip to Vietnam as part of the course “The American War: The Struggle for Independence in Vietnam.” He and participating students spoke in-person to Vietnamese citizens about the war, and will be sharing their perspectives on Wednesday.

As part of the event, attendees will be among the first people in northeast Florida to view excerpts of the highly-acclaimed film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick.

The panel discussion, which will be held after a brief viewing of film segments, will examine the role patriotism played on all sides of the Vietnam conflict.

“Everyone who took a side in the conflict did so out of the way they defined ‘patriotism,’” Butler said.  “American GI’s, anti-war protestors, the media, South Vietnamese, Buddhists, Viet Cong….Everyone from LBJ to Ho Chi Minh used their love of country to justify their actions. ‘Patriotism’ is not a monolithic concept and has many definitions.”

The Sept. 6 event will be held in Flagler College’s Ringhaver Student Center, Virginia Room, located at 50 Sevilla Street. The reception will be from 6:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., the welcome and screening from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and the panel and audience discussion from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.