As I begin wrapping up my research for this paper, one of my last pieces of information has proved to be crucial. I have several scans of the series of photographs Browne took, beginning with the procession, the lighting of the fire, and Duc’s immolation and death. Underneath the images are quotes from Browne from an interview he did with Hal Buell in April of 1998. In the quotation, Browne relives the scene, and explains, with vivid detail, the process of death Duc underwent. While I am already aware of the details surrounding the immolation, reading them from a primary source of Browne himself is extremely helpful to understand his exact perspective from behind the camera lens. I plan on integrating Browne’s quotes in my paper in the beginning introduction paragraph, to explain the scene that unfolded in front of him and the many spectators and journalists on that fateful summer day of 1963.
With my research winding down, the last few pieces of information I have obtained have successfully concluded the missing spaces I had in my outline notes. My paper now has enough research to prove the thesis I am working on, with several (about 20) newspaper articles from online archives. Also in my research are three books written by journalists who witnessed the immolation, two modern scholarly journal articles that discuss the long-term effects the photograph had, and an email interview with Ken Crouse, a first hand observer of the Vietnam war, who was able to provide an individualized account of the social repercussions behind Browne’s photograph. All of this research culminates to prove not only the lasting impact the photograph had on American society, but also the choices made following the immolation by various newspapers, revealing much about society and the coverage of the Vietnam War. My thesis will be about not only the American public’s perception, but also the reception of those in authority positions of esteemed newspapers, and how they chose to frame the happenings of Diem’s regime, the Buddhists themselves, and the Vietnam war as a whole.