Geoffrey C. Stewart

- Adjunct Assistant Professor

image of Geoffrey C. Stewart
PhD, The University of Western Ontario

Research Interests

I am international historian whose research focuses on the United States in the World, situating America’s global engagement at the intersection of decolonization and the Cold War.

Teaching Philosophy

I see my role as an instructor primarily as a facilitator of learning. I provide my students with a basic road-map that clarifies difficult topics. Whenever possible, I integrate the latest material from my research into the classroom to provide my students with a cutting-edge learning experience. I encourage my students to process and evaluate material in a critical and meaningful manner that places the material into a larger context that is more relevant to them. This reflects my goals as an instructor: develop my students’ analytic skills, improve their ability to express ideas in both written and oral form, and encourage them to employ new ways to approach problems. Regardless of the career they choose, I believe such a skill-set is indispensable for success.

Major Research Projects

My book, Vietnam’s Lost Revolution: Ngô Đình Diệm’s Failure to Build and Independent Nation, will be out in early 2017. It is a multiarchival study of South Vietnamese president Ngô Đình Diệm’s ambitious civic action program. This program tasked government cadres with fomenting a national revolution to overcome the Republic of Vietnam’s underdevelopment—a legacy of the French imperial project in Indochina—and establish South Vietnam as a viable, independent noncommunist state.

Currently, I am working on two other research projects. The first is an examination of the relationship between the International Control Commission, the United States government and Ngô Đình Diệm between 1954 and 1963. My other project is a transnational history of development in noncommunist Southeast Asian states in the lead-up to the American War in Vietnam. It explores the dialogue among state and non-state actors about nation-building and modernity in Southeast Asia as they faced the challenge of building viable postcolonial states in a Cold War world. It aims to bridge the disciplinary gap between postcolonial theory and international history to examine how the global Cold War was conceived in Southeast Asia.


  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, Vietnam’s Lost Revolution: Ngo Dinh Diem’s Failure to Build an Independent Nation, 1955-1963 (Cambridge University Press, 2017)
  • (To read the H-Diplo Roundtable Review, click here)

Other Publications

  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.: An American Proconsul in Diem’s Vietnam,” in Diplomats at War: The American Experience, eds. Andrew Stewart and J. Simon Rofe (Dodrecht, ND: Republic of Letters Publishing, 2012), 231-250
  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “Hearts, Minds and Công Dân Vụ: The Special Commissariat for Civic Action and Nation-Building in Diệm’s Vietnam, 1955–1957,” Journal of Vietnamese Studies 6(3) (Fall 2011), 44-100

Book Reviews

  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “The War after the War: The Struggle for Credibility during America’s Exit from Vietnam,” Journal of Vietnamese Studies forthcoming
  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “Vietnam at War, Vietnam’s Southern Revolution: From Peasant Insurrection to Total War and A Vietnam War Reader: A Documentary History from American and Vietnamese Perspectives,” Journal of Asian Studies forthcoming
  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “Hanoi and the American War: Two International Histories; Hanoi’s Road to the Vietnam War, 1954-1965 and Hanoi’s War: An International History of the War for Peace”, Cross-Currents: East Asian History and Culture Review 3(1) (May 2014), 275-285
  • Geoffrey C. Stewart, “Cauldron of Resistance: Ngo Dinh Diem, the United States, and 1950s Southern Vietnam,” H-Diplo Roundtable (November 18, 2013)

Select Conference Presentations

  • “Community Development and Revolution in Ngô Đình Diệm’s Vietnam,” forthcoming annual conference of the Association for Asian Studies, Toronto, March 2017 (organized panel: Comparative Nation-Building in Postcolonial Southeast Asia: Counterinsurgency, Development and Self-Determination in Malaya and the Republic of Vietnam)
  • “To Build a Nation from the Ground Up: Community Development and Revolution in Ngo Dinh Diem’s Vietnam,” annual conference of the Society for Historians of Foreign Relations, San Diego, CA, June 2016 (organized panel: The Vietnamese, the State, and Society in the Long Vietnam War)
  • “Vanguard of a Lost Revolution: Civic Action and Counterinsurgency in Ngô Đình Diệm’s Vietnam,” annual conference of the Society for Historians of Foreign Relations, Arlington, VA, June 2015
  • “The ICC and North-South Relations in the First Republic of Vietnam (1955-1963),” annual conference of the Society for Historians of Foreign Relations, the University of Kentucky, Lextington, KY, June 2014
  • “America and the First Republic of Vietnam: A Transatlantic Perspective,” annual conference of the Transatlantic Studies Association, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland, July 2012
  • “The Pernicious Plenipotentiary: Re-examining Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. in Ngo Dinh Diem’s Vietnam,” annual conference of the Transatlantic Studies Association, Dundee University, Dundee, Scotland, July 2011
  • “Community Development, Modernization and Exceptionalism in South Vietnam, 1957-1963,” conference on The American Experience in Southeast Asia, 1945-1975, the State Department, Washington, DC, September 2010