Pham Duy Ton: Journalist, Short Story Writer, Collector of Humorous Stories

This article describes the life of Pham Duy Ton (1881-1924), a Vietnamese writer and journalist who was an important intellectual and literary figure in colonial Vietnam. (He should not be confused with his famous son, the song composer Pham Duy Can—popularly known as Pham Duy.) I focus on Pham Duy Ton’s accomplishments as a journalist, short story writer, and compiler of bawdy stories. An appendix to the article, called “A Story and Two Anecdotes,” includes a translation of Pham Duy Ton’s most famous story, “It’s Nothing to Me” (Song Chet Mac Bay), and also translations of two humorous anecdotes from a collection of bawdy tales that he compiled. Cao Thi Nhu Quynh was the co-translator of all three of these texts.