In books mentioning the Cao Đài, it is still common to read about their strangeness—thus, Fredrik Logevall, the historian of the Vietnam War, calls the religion “an exotic mixture of spiritualism, Confucianism, Buddhism, and Catholicism.”1 Such comments reflect an enduring strain in the history of modern Vietnam of exoticizing what is unknown to Westerners. It has thus been a pleasure to see Vietnamese and other scholars recently articulate substantive approaches to the Cao Đài in non-Vietnamese languages. In the last few years, two innovative books have taken Cao Đài studies in new directions. The first, looking inwards, is Jérémy Jammes's magisterial Les Oracles du Cao Đài: Étude d'un Mouvement Religieux Vietnamien et de Ses Réseaux, which digs deeply, and exhaustively, into the genesis and transformation of Cao Đài in Vietnam, with a particular emphasis on its oracles.2 The second, looking outwards, is this clearly written, absorbing, and...

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