Viet Thanh Nguyen was born in a small Vietnamese village in 1971. At the age of four, shortly before the South Vietnamese regime surrendered to communist forces in the North, he was evacuated to the United States along with his family. Initially housed in a refugee camp in the state of Pennsylvania, in 1978 his parents settled in California, where Nguyen lives to this day, and opened a shop selling Vietnamese products. The writer currently holds the Aerol Arnold Chair in English, American and Ethnic Studies at the University of Southern California, where he lectures on literature, American culture, and racial issues. In addition to The Sympathizer, which won him numerous awards including the famous Pulitzer Prize, and the sequel The Committed, he is the author of the book of short stories The Refugees, in which he continues to explore refugee status, and the books of essays Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America and Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War, a National Book Award finalist. He is also a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim and MacArthur Foundations.