Archipelago of Resettlement: Vietnamese Refugee Settlers and Decolonization across Guam and Israel-Palestine with Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi

Tuesday, April 26, 2022
4:00 to 6:00pm
UCLA Fowler Museum Terrace


Join author Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi (UCLA) with discussants, Keith Camacho (UCLA), Thu-Huong Nguyen-Vo (UCLA), and Loubna Qutami (UCLA)


What happens when refugees encounter Indigenous sovereignty struggles in the countries of their resettlement?


From April to November 1975, the US military processed over 112,000 Vietnamese refugees on the unincorporated territory of Guam; from 1977 to 1979, the State of Israel granted asylum and citizenship to 366 non-Jewish Vietnamese refugees. Archipelago of Resettlement analyzes these two cases to theorize what Gandhi calls the refugee settler condition: the fraught positionality of refugee subjects whose resettlement in a settler colonial state is predicated upon the unjust dispossession of an Indigenous population. This groundbreaking book traces two forms of critical geography: first, archipelagos of empire, examining how the Vietnam War is linked to the US military build-up in Guam and unwavering support of Israel, and second, corresponding archipelagos of resistance, tracing how Chamorro decolonization efforts and Palestinian liberation struggles are connected through the Vietnamese refugee figure. Thinking through distinct yet overlapping modalities of refugee and Indigenous displacement, Gandhi offers tools for imagining emergent forms of decolonial solidarity between refugee settlers and Indigenous peoples.


Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi is an assistant professor of Asian American Studies at UCLA. Her interdisciplinary research engages critical refugee studies, settler colonial studies, and transpacific studies. Archipelago of Resettlement: Vietnamese Refugee Settlers and Decolonization across Guam and Israel-Palestine, published by University of California Press, is her first book. You can check out Dr. Gandhi's films on Vimeo. She also hosts a podcast, Distorted Footprints, through her Critical Refugee Studies class.


Books will be on sale at the event. Payment can be made with credit card only.


NOTE ON IN-PERSON EVENTS: Patrons attending events at UCLA must comply with all applicable UCLA COVID-19 protocols. These include, but are not limited to, wearing a face mask indoors; showing proof of vaccination and photo ID; and completing the daily UCLA COVID-19 Symptom Monitoring Survey (a screenshot will count as proof). You can access and fill out the clearance survey at this site. Please complete the UCLA COVID-19 Symptom Monitoring Survey, if possible, before arriving at UCLA. We will check the clearance status of every attendee at the door before allowing entry into the event venue.


Cost: All are welcome

Contact: Nguyet Tong (



Sponsor(s): Center for Near Eastern Studies, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Asian American Studies Center, Asian American Studies Department, Critical Refugee Studies Collective