The Nationalist Movement in Indo-China Class 10 Social Science History Chapter 2 Important Notes

The Nationalist Movement in Indo-China Class 10 Social Science History Chapter 2 Important Notes

Here you will find Important Notes for CBSE Class 10 Social Science History Chapter 2 The Nationalist Movement in Indo-China.

Important Notes

➤ Though Vietnam gained formal independence in 1945 before India, but it took three decades to attain the Republic.

➤ Indo-China comprises the modern countries of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

➤ The colonisation of Vietnam by the French brought the people of the country into conflict with the colonisers in almost every walk of life.

➤ The French not only established military and economic control over Vietnam but it also tried to reshape the culture of the Vietnamese.

➤ French troops came in Vietnam in 1858 and by the mid-1880s they established control over the northern region.

➤ After the Franco-Chinese war, Tonkin and Anaam came under the control of the French domination and in 1887 French Indo-China was formed.

➤ Slowly and steadily the Nationalist resistance developed in people of Vietnam.

➤ Exploring and mapping rivers was part of the colonial enterprise as the rivers were the only medium of trade and transport.

➤ Colonies were considered essential to supply natural resources and other essential goods. Like other western nations, France also thought it was the mission of the European countries to bring the benefits of civilisation to backward people.

➤ In order to expand their territories the French began building canals and draining lands in the Mekong delta to increase cultivation. The vast system of irrigation works-canals and earthworks – built with forced labour increased rice production and allowed the export of rice to the international market.

➤ The construction of Trans-Indo-China rail network to link the northern and southern parts of Vietnam was also started.

➤ The French also built the second line to link Vietnam to Siam (modern Thailand), via Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh.

➤ Paul Bernard, a writer and policy-maker, believed that the economy of the colonies needed to be developed. He believed that it would also help to improve the standard of living of the people which would ultimately prove to be advantageous for the coloniser.

➤ The colonial economy in Vietnam was primarily based on rice cultivation and rubber plantations and indentured Vietnamese labour was widely used in these plantations.

➤ French colonisation was also driven by the idea of a ‘civilising mission’. Like the British in India, the French also wanted to bring modern civilisation to the Vietnamese. The French wanted to destroy local cultures, religions and traditions as they believed they were outdated and prevented modern development. So they wanted to educate the ‘native’ to civilise them. This they also did because they required educated local labour force but they feared that education might create problems. Once educated the Vietnamese may begin to question colonial domination.

➤ The French were faced with yet another problem in the sphere of education. The elites in Vietnam were influenced by Chinese culture. To counter the Chinese influence the French established French schools for the Vietnamese.

➤ It was decided that Vietnamese be taught in lower classes and French in the higher classes.

➤ But only a few elite Vietnamese could enroll in the schools, and only a few could pass the school-leaving examination because French people deliberately failed the students mainly in the final year, so as to stop them from getting better-paid jobs. Two-thirds of the students failed and in 1925, out of 17 million population less than 400 passed the examination.

➤ School textbooks glorified the French and justified colonial rule and represented the Vietnamese as primitive and backward, capable of manual labour only. School children were taught that only French rule could ensure peace in Vietnam.

➤ The Tonkin Free School was started in 1907 to provide a western style education to the Vietnamese. Many Vietnamese teachers and students opposed it.

➤ A major protest exploded in 1926 in the Saigon Native Girls School, when a Vietnamese girl sitting in one of the front seats was asked to vacate the seat for a local French student and when she refused, she was expelled from the school. When the angry students protested, they too were expelled. This led to open protests. To control the situation the students were taken back.

➤ Elsewhere, students fought against the colonial government’s efforts to prevent the Vietnamese from qualifying for white-collar jobs. Schools thus became an important place for political and cultural battles. The battle against French colonial education became part of the larger battle against colonialism and for independence.

➤ Religion played an important role in uniting Vietnamese against colonial control. Vietnam’s religious beliefs were a mixture of Buddhism, Confucianism and local practices. The French missionaries introduced Christianity and tried to convert Vietnamese to Christianity.

➤ The Scholars Revolt started in 1868 against French control and the spread of Christianity. It was led by officials at the imperial court angered by the spread of Catholicism and French power. They led a general uprising in Ngu An and Ha Tien provinces where over a thousand Catholics were killed. Though the French successfully crushed the movement but this uprising inspired other patriots.

➤ Another movement, called the Hoa Hao Movement, was started in 1939 by Huynh Phu So in the fertile Mekong Delta area. Phu So opposed the sale of child brides, gambling and the use of alcohol and opium. However, this movement was suppressed.

➤ Phan Boi Chau (1867-1940) became a major figure in the anti-colonial resistance from the time he formed the Revolutionary Society (Duy Tan Hoi) in 1903, with Prince Cuong De as the head. His most influential book, The History of the Loss of Vietnam became bestseller in Vietnam and China.

➤ Phan Chu Trinh (1871-1926) differed with Phan Boi Chau. He opposed the idea of resisting the French with the help of the court. He wished to establish a democratic republic. He did not want a wholesale rejection of Western civilisation.

➤ In the first decade of the twentieth century ‘Go East Movement’ became popular. In 1907-08, some 300 Vietnamese students went to Japan to acquire modern education with intentions to throw out the French from Vietnam and the emperor to re-establish the Nguyen dynasty. Vietnamese students established a branch of the Restoration Society in Tokyo to attain the same objective but they were exiled and sent back to China and Thailand.

➤ Developments in China also inspired Vietnamese nationalists. In 1911, the monarchy in China was overthrown and a Republic was established. Inspired by it, Vietnamese students also organised the Association for the Restoration of Vietnam (Viet-Nam Quan Phuc Hoi), to set up a democratic republic.

➤ The Great Depression of the 1930s had a deep impact on Vietnam. Prices of rubber and rice fell, leading to rising rural debts, unemployment, and rural uprisings. But the uprisings were suppressed with great harshness by throwing bombs.

➤ In February 1930, Ho Chi Minh established the Vietnamese Communist (Vietnam Cong San Dang) Party later renamed the Indo-Chinese Communist Party but in 1940 when Japan occupied Vietnam to control Southeast Asia the problems of Vietnamese nationalists aggravated. Now they had to fight against the Japanese as well as the French.

➤ The League for the Independence of Vietnam (Viet Nam Doc Lap Dong Minh), which came to be known as the Vietminh, fought the Japanese occupation and recaptured Hanoi in September 1945.

➤ The Democratic Republic of Vietnam was formed and Ho Chi Minh became its Chairman.

➤ The new republic faced a number of problems. The French tried to regain their control taking help of the emperor, Bao Dai, as their puppet. They became successful in forcing Vietminh to retreat to the hills.

➤ After eight years of fighting, the French were defeated in 1954 at Dien Bien Phu. The Supreme French Commander of the French armies, General Henry Navarre had declared confidently in 1953 that they would soon be victorious but it did not happen.

➤ In the peace negotiations in Geneva that followed the French defeat, the Vietnamese were persuaded to accept the division of the country. North and south were split. Ho Chi Minh and the communists took power in the north and Bao Dai’s regime was put in power
in the south

➤ The Bao Dai regime was soon overthrown by a coup led by Ngo Dinh Diem. Diem built a dictatorial government which was opposed by a broad opposition united under the banner of the National Liberation Front (NLF). With the help of the Ho Chi Minh government in the north, the National Liberation Front (NLF) fought for the unification of the country.

➤ The US entry into the war adversely affected both the Vietnamese and the Americans.

➤ The widespread attacks and use of chemical weapons destroyed many villages and ruined jungles. Civilians died in large numbers in Vietnam.

➤ The effect of the war was felt within the US as well. The anger spread in the low working class youth, for giving their compulsory service in the armed forces.

➤ The story of Ho Chi Minh trail is all about how the Vietnamese used their limited resources to great advantage in their fight against the US. The trail, an immense network of footpaths and roads, was made to transport men and materials from the north to the south. Many support bases and hospitals were also made along the way to attend the people. Most of the trail was outside Vietnam in neighbouring Laos, Cambodia and South Vietnam.

➤ The US regularly tried to stop this trail by bombing but failed as it was rebuilt very quickly.

➤ Vietnamese women played a significant role in this war. They worked as warriors and workers. They helped in nursing the wounded, constructing underground rooms and tunnels and fighting the enemy.

➤ This war was called the first television war as the battle scenes were shown on the daily news programmes. Many became disillusioned with what the US was doing and writers like Mary McCarthy and actors like Jane Fonda even visited North Vietnam and praised their heroic defence of the country.

Important Keywords

Indentured labour: A form of labour widely used in the plantations from the midnineteenth century. Labourers worked on the basis of contracts that did not specify any rights of the labourers, but gave immense power to the employers which they used in exploiting the poor labourers.

Syncretic: Aims to bring together different beliefs and practices seeing their essential unity rather than their difference.

Concentration camp: A camp where people were detained for torture and brutal treatment.

Republic: A government based on popular consent and popular representation.

Obscurantist: Person or ideas that mislead.

Napalm: An organic compound used to thicken gasoline for firebombs.

Ordinance 10: A French law that allowed Christianity but outlawed Buddhism.

Important Dates

1802: Nguyen Anh became the emperor symbolising the unification of the country under the Nguyen Dynasty.

1867: Cochinchina (the South) became a French colony.

1887: The Indo-China Union was created including Cochinchina, Annam, Tonkin, Cambodia and later, Laos.

1930: Ho Chi Minh formed the Vietnamese Communist Party.

1945: Vietminh started a general popular insurrection. Bao Dai resigned. Ho Chi Minh declared independence in Hanoi (September 23).

1954: The French army was defeated at Dien Bien Phu.

1961: Kennedy decided to increase US military aid to South Vietnam.

1974: Paris Peace Treaty.

1975: (April 30) NLF troops entered Saigon.

1976: The Socialist Republic of Vietnam was proclaimed.

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