What was the role of women in the anti-imperial struggle in Vietnam? Compare this with the role of women in the nationalist struggle in India.
Women played a crucial role in the anti-imperial struggle in Vietnam. Women who rebelled against social conventions were idealised and rebel women of the past were likewise celebrated. Trieu Au was a popular figure in nationalist tales. In the 1960s, women were represented as brave soldiers and workers. They assisted in nursing wounded soldiers, constructing underground tunnels and fighting the enemy. Interestingly, between 1965 and 1975, 70-80% of the youth working on the Ho Chi Minh trail were women.
Compared to this very direct and active participation of Vietnamese women in the anti-imperial struggle, India women did not play a very dynamic role in the nationalist struggle of India against Great Britain. They followed Gandhian ideals of boycotting foreign goods and picketing liquor shops, but mainstream politics was controlled by men; although women like Sarojini Naidu, Kamla Nehru and Kasturba Gandhi were keenly involved.