Greg Lockhart

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Greg Lockhart (1947) is an Australian author whose internationally acclaimed work includes translation, literary criticism, and Vietnamese and Australian histories.

He graduated from the Royal Military College Duntroon in 1968 and served in the Pacific Islands Regiment in Papua, New Guinea and the Australian Army Training Team in Viet Nam. He left the army in 1975, took a doctorate at the University of Sydney and was an Australia National University Vietnam scholar from 1986 to 2001.

The Minefield: an Australian tragedy in Vietnam (2007), shows how Australian commanders laid a large minefield that was not properly protected because they did not understand who or where the enemy was. They did not understand that their enemy already surrounded them. Vietnamese revolutionaries were thus able to enter the minefield, dig up a quarter of the over 20,000 powerful M16 “Jumping Jack” mines it contained, and turn the mines back against The Australian Task Force with devastating effect. As well as providing a richly detailed description of mine warfare, The Minefield tells a “story of strategic self-destruction”.

The Minefield is a bookend to Lockhart's Nation in Arms: The Origins of the People’s Army of Vietnam (1989), on the growth of the People's Army from armed propaganda teams in the 1940s. Between these military histories came a series of translations with commentary. Lockhart introduced Viet Nam's avant-gardist Nguyen Huy Thiep, with his hallmark renovation novella, The General Retires (1991). Lockhart then stepped back to the emergence of modern literature in colonial Hanoi. Working with his wife Monique, he produced a heavily annotated version of Going to France (1994) by Nhat Linh, who is often called the father of modern Vietnamese literature. With Monique, he also produced The Light of the Capital (1996) containing three stories by less well-known authors of the 1930s: Tam Lang, Vu Trong Phung and Nguyen Hong.

Since 2007 his main interest has been in Australian history.

Dan Duffy started this entry with review by Greg Lockhart.

Books by Greg Lockhart

  • Nation in Arms: The Origins of the People’s Army of Vietnam (1989)
  • The General Retires by Nguyen Huy Thiep, translated with an introduction by Greg Lockhart (1991)
  • The Light of the Capital: Three Modern Vietnamese Classics by Tam Long, Vu Trong Phung and Nguyen Hong, translated by Greg and Monique Lockhart with an introduction by Greg Lockhart(1996)
  • The Minefield: an Australian tragedy in Vietnam (2007)

Greg Lockhart Online