Panel 1: Narratives of Decay
Przemysław Paluszek, The Dutch Eighteenth Century in Polish Literary Historiography: A Hiatus between the Golden Age and the Nineteenth Century. Adam Mickiewicz University Poznań; University of Opole.
The Polish-Dutch relations, both literary/cultural and economic, which flourished during the Dutch Golden Age, did not vanish into thin air after 1672. Lucia Thijssen’s 1000 jaar Polen en Nederland (1992), a panoramic survey of the mutual connections between Poland and the Low Countries, leaves no doubt that Poles invariably engaged in robust commercial dealings with the Dutch (especially in the money-lending business) and continued to come to the Republic for studies and/or military training. Texts about Poland circulated in the Netherlands, as exemplified by Dutch Spectators, in which the Polish nobleman (symptomatically, a ‘citizen’ of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, the only other ‘republic’ in Europe before 1789) featured as one of stock motifs However, the long eighteenth century is conspicuously less prominent in Thijssen’s study than the neighbouring periods. In a corresponding process, Polish scholarship on the Netherlands seems to have developed its own relative disinterest in this era, which is showcased by the Polish histories of Dutch literature. In my paper, I offer a twofold explanation of the decreased prominence of the Dutch eighteenth-century cultural production in Polish literary historiography. Firstly, I argue that until quite recently the Age of Enlightenment suffered a certain disregard from Dutch authors, who may not have dismissed it as ‘a period of decay’ (to use Thijssen’s harsh censure) but clearly deemed it less engaging than the Golden Age or the nineteenth century. In an interesting local iteration of the master narrative, Polish scholars seem to have reproduced this stereotyped and stereotyping framework. Secondly, I contend that this entrenchment of literary-historical evaluative patterns and, consequently, of academic investments is attributable to a distinctive developmental trajectory of Dutch Studies in Poland, specifically to the absence of institutional Dutch Studies at Polish universities until the mid-1970s.
I am a graduate of the University of Wrocław (Poland), from which I received my MA in Dutch Studies in 2009 and my BA in English Studies in 2010. Having completed a PhD Programme in the Humanities at the same University in 2016, I am currently completing my PhD project on the Dutch Golden Age in nineteenth-century Dutch literary histories, with Professor Jerzy Koch of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań (Poland) as my academic advisor. I have held appointments at each of the three Departments of Dutch Studies in Poland (Wrocław, Lublin, Poznań), teaching a variety of courses, ranging from the Dutch Proficiency module, to Introduction to Linguistics and Dutch-Polish Translation, to History of Dutch-Language Literature, Young Adult Fiction and Film Adaptations of Dutch Literary Texts.
Currently I am affiliated with the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, as a lecturer at Poland’s second oldest Department of Dutch Studies, and with the University of Opole (Poland), where I am in charge of the Dutch Programme within the Department of German Studies.
My major research interests include the reception of (Dutch-language) literature, (Dutch-language) literature in a broad cultural context, literary historiography and, most recently, literature and culture in the spatial context (urban studies).
Gijs Rommelse, Dutch Naval Decline and British Seapower Identity. University of Leicester.
The dramatic decline of the Dutch Republic following the Treaty of Utrecht of 1713 attracted a great deal of interest in Great Britain. Writers, politicians and cartoonists described and mocked the waning of the Dutch fleet power and sought to explain this development. The interpretations they came up with were part of a broader public discourse about British naval power and, in extenso, also ‘the’ British national identity. The Republic was no longer a serious partner or an important opponent in the minefield of eighteenth- century international politics. The Dutch state nevertheless continued to function in British political debates, analyses and polemic as a mirror; politicians and authors used the Dutch case to teach their audience lessons about British naval power and seapower identity. Their interpretations of Dutch naval decline were, to a large extent, shaped by the dynamic interplay between conceptions of Britishness on the one hand and contrasting stereotypes of Dutch citizenship on the other. Subsequently, their representations of Dutch weakness at sea also confirmed and thus enriched the concept of ‘Britishness’.
This paper shows that British authors and politicians regarded naval power as one of the core elements of Britishness. From this frame of reference, and anticipating that of their intended audience, they employed the expressive force of the collective memory of the Republic as a formidable enemy at sea to emphasize the great importance of naval power for Great Britain and the danger of neglect thereof. In addition, their choice of the Republic as a mirror was motivated by the perception of the Dutch as a sort of strayed brother: maritime-oriented globalists and fellow Protestants who had tragically deserted the right path the Brits had continued to walk. The comparison was evidently relevant because of these ceterus paribus conditions. Finally, it is interesting to notice that British interpretations of eighteenth-century Dutch naval decay also seemed to spring from an ambivalent stereotype of the seventeenth-century Dutch Republic: respect and sympathy for a formidable competitor from the past on the one hand, and on the other hand and scorn and disdain for the dishonorable, greedy cheese mongers and butter boxes on the other.
Dr. Gijs Rommelse is currently Head of History at the Haarlemmermeer Lyceum in Hoofddorp. Among his books are The Second Anglo-Dutch War (1665-1667). International raison’d état, mercantilism and maritime strife (Verloren 2006); A fearful gentleman. Sir George Downing in The Hague 1657-1672 (Verloren 2011); The Dutch in the Early Modern World. A History of Globalization (Cambridge UP, forthcoming). He is also the co-editor of Ideology and Foreign Policy in Early Modern Europe 1650-1750 (Ashgate 2011); Ideologies of Western Naval Power, c. 1500-1815 (Routledge, forthcoming) and War, Trade and the State. Anglo-Dutch Conflict 1652-1688 (Boydell, forthcoming).
Rob van de Schoor, Nowhere Man Travelling through Nowhere Land: Former Patriot Strick van Linschoten Visits the United Kingdom of the Netherlands. Radboud University Nijmegen.
In the summer of 1817, P.H.A.J. Strick van Linschoten made a journey through the United Kingdom of the Netherlands, which he reported in his Vertraute Briefe während eines Durchflugs durch einen Theil der nördlichen Provinzen des Königreichs der Niederlande (three volumes, Mannheim 1818). Strick visited his fatherland as an exile: when his travel letters were published, he had been living Mannheim for ten years. As a radical patriot, he had become estranged from the Netherlands. Prior to that, he had been an envoy to the Batavian Republic in Württemberg. At the end of his life, Germany had become a second home to him. Strick’s description of the Netherlands therefore offers an interesting dual perspective: one of a Dutch German explaining the circumstances in the United Kingdom to his German audience and one of an ex-patriot drifting in a country that had long since squandered its revolutionary achievements in favour of restoration and monarchical rule.
A different perspective was added when a Dutch translation and edition of Strick’s Vertraute Briefe was published in 1855-1856, titled Herinnering van den baron Strick van Linschoten. Naar het Hoogduitsch bewerkt door een staatsman (two volumes, [Memory of baron Strick van Linschoten, amended from the German by a statesman]). This ‘statesman’ made a thorough edition of Strick’s travel letters, granting them topicality political state of affairs of the mid-nineteenth-century. The editor added a final chapter to Strick’s book, in which he appears to be the author’s political successor: he abhors the rule of king William I and takes a radical liberal stance. From the perspective of political history, this Dutch edition is an interesting text to study, since it lays bare the connection between eighteenth-century patriotism and nineteenth-century liberalism.
How did the German travel letters portray the Netherlands, the Dutch and Dutch history? Is the author attempting to connect Dutch history with republican freedom, as propagated by the patriots? Is he arguing that this freedom is incompatible with the contemporary authoritarian rule of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands? The Dutch version of the letters may provide different answers to these questions, if we study the translation, emendation or, in fact, removal of relevant passages from the original, as well as the ways in which certain elements have been made to tie into a mid-nineteenth-century context. We may expect Strick’s travel letters to evoke an image of the ‘true Dutchman’, a freedom-loving, anti-authoritarian citizen — a different type than we know from recent research into Dutch identity in the nineteenth century.
Rob van de Schoor (1959) is assistant professor of nineteenth-century Dutch literature at Radboud University Nijmegen.
Panel 2: Travellers and Travelogues
Paul Hulsenboom, Sightseeing through the Ages: Comparing Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Polish Travel Accounts of the Dutch Republic. Radboud University Nijmegen.
From the beginning of the seventeenth century, up to the end of the eighteenth, the Northern Dutch Provinces were a popular travel destination among young Polish noblemen. During the Eighty Years’ War, many came to the Dutch Republic in order to acquire military knowledge and study at Dutch universities. Later on, the United Provinces were frequently visited as part of a Polish nobleman’s typical Grand Tour. Travellers often wrote accounts of their experiences in the Dutch Republic, many of which have survived.
This paper will compare a number of these accounts by Polish travellers, from both the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. This will enable us to see a development in the Polish descriptions of the Dutch Republic. Even though most of them were Catholic, Polish travellers generally appreciated the United Provinces. A constant element of admiration was formed by the Dutch landscape, which differed greatly from Poland-Lithuania. Amsterdam, and the opulence and variety offered by its markets, was also enthusiastically commented upon. This remained the case during the eighteenth century, at a time when the Dutch Golden Age had long since passed.
However, the accounts also show several shifts of focus. While in the seventeenth century the Dutch Republic was seen as a military powerhouse and school of war, for example, this was no longer the case during the eighteenth century. Instead, the Dutch were praised for being exceedingly clean, but also became increasingly associated with greed.
Paul Hulsenboom (1990) is a cultural and literary historian. He studied Classics, Literary Studies and Education at Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands, where he is currently employed as a PhD student at the Department of Dutch Language and Culture. He specialises in Early Modern relations between the Low Countries and Poland-Lithuania, particularly in the fields of cultural and literary exchange, as well as diplomacy. His PhD project concerns the development of Dutch perceptions of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Polish-Lithuanian perceptions of the Dutch Republic during the long seventeenth century. He has published on Latin bucolic poetry, seventeenth-century emblems, and the reception of Maciej Kazimierz Sarbiewski, the ‘Polish Horace’, in the Low Countries.
Koen Scholten, Joannes Kool’s Experience of the Transnational Republic of Letters, 1698–1699. Utrecht University.
Joannes Kool (1672–1712) travelled from Utrecht to Rome on his Grand Tour around Europe in 1698 and 1699. His experience of his travels through the Low Countires, France, Italy, and Germany are recorded in a recently uncovered travel journal. This journal stands out in contrast with other documented travel journals because of the scholarly character of his travels and its size (970 folios in three volumes). Most importantly, Kool’s account offers a unique insight in scholarly practices and encounters which reveal Kool’s self-presentation as a scholar. This scholarly persona, then, allows Kool to overcome contemporary stereotypes of Protestants as impious barbarians.
This paper will focus on Kool’s encounters with scholars in Florence and Rome. To mask his identity as a protestant from the Low Countries, Kool presents himself as a member of the learned community in the Dutch Republic. This scholarly identity allows Kool to circumvent problems such as getting access to libraries and learned men. Throughout the journal, one can observe a process of “othering”, where the scholar or studious type is contrasted with less morally-inclined men, especially monks, clergymen and other traveling “young folk” who “visit whores” and “engage in debauchery”. Kool thus consciously tries to remove associations with “normal” travelers and protestants and present himself as a morally superior scholar. As such, Kool’s case highlights the presence of contemporary stereotyping between the confessional divide and the function of a scholarly identity to overcome these stereotypes.
Koen Scholten is a PhD candidate at Utrecht University and part of the SKILLNET project. Koen’s doctoral research focuses on the formation of the early modern learned community – the so-called Republic of Letters – by looking at scholarly identity and memory.
Thomas von der Dunk, Foreign Eyes on the Republic: Those of Emperor Joseph II. Independent scholar.
In 1781, the Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II paid a short visit to the Dutch Republic. Following his inspection tour through the Austrian Netherlands, during a week he played the tourist, travelling incognito through the province of Holland — the towns of Rotterdam, Delft, The Hague, Leiden, Haarlem, Den Helder, Zaandam and Amsterdam being his main stops. Although he combined his journey with some political contacts with the Dutch authorities and presumably also with arranging his financial interests with his Rotterdam banker, it was mainly for private sightseeing that the emperor came along. Polders, scientific collections, orphanages, naval harbours, the beach of the Northsea, the mausoleum of William of Orange in Delft, the organ in the Bavochurch of Haarlem, the super-clean village of Broek in Waterland and the famous tiny Czar Peter-House were, among others, on his wish-list. The travel-story of his tour was published a few years later in Dutch and in French. Although not written by the emperor himself, the booklet offers a deeper understanding of what in the Dutch Republic may be regarded by other governments as interesting and modern, as Joseph II, a child of the Enlightenment, was always eager to learn.
Thomas von der Dunk is a cultural historian and journalist for De Volkskrant. He studied art history at the University of Amsterdam and in 1994 finished a PhD on the political and ideological aspects of the monument tradition in the Holy Roman Empire between the fourteenth and eighteenth centuries. In his latest book, Zuid-Tirol is niet Italië! (2017), Von der Dunk focuses on the history of South Tyrol, its conflicts with the Italian governments and its attempts of independence and autonomy.
Panel 3: Auto vs. Hetero
Enrico Zucchi, The Republics in Comparison: Perspectives on Genoa and the United Provinces at the End of the Seventeenth Century. University of Padova.
Well before the publication of the Parallèle de la situation de la République de Hollande avec celle de la République de Gênes (1747), the Republic of Genoa was commonly regarded, among the Italian states, as having the most similar regime to that of the Dutch Republic. Indeed several Italian authors, at the end of the seventeenth century, wrote accounts or political treatises which pointed out many similarities between these two governments, or even tried to better comprehend the uniqueness of the Dutch Republic, balancing its political and economical status with that of Genoa.
The paper aims to analyze the Italian consideration of the United Provinces at the end of the seventeenth century, looking at the political writings of authors whose works deals both with the Republic of Genoa and the Dutch Republic, such as Gualdo Priorato (1606-1678), Gregorio Leti (1630-1701) and Gian Paolo Marana (1642-1693). These authors, whose texts were widely read during the eighteenth-century, and shaped – especially in the case of Leti – the Italian approach to the Dutch Republic, often focus on connections between Genoa and the Dutch Republic. They underline the similarities between the role of the Doge and that of the Prince of Orange, they celebrate the commercial and proto-capitalistic attitude of these two states and the common rhetoric of freedom, but they also notice the same weaknesses in the two countries’ foreign policies, in their relations with the powerful monarchies of Spain and France. This comparative analysis will allow not only to better comprehend the Italian considerations about the Dutch Republic at the end of the seventeenth century, but also to show how the Dutch constitution was often idealized and presented as a model for a future redemption of the depressed Italian Republics.
My research interests focus mainly on seventeenth and eighteenth century European theater, particularly on the political, juridical and esthetical contents of the Italian tragedy. I am actually Post-Doc Research Fellow at the University of Padova (where I gained my PhD in Literary Studies in 2017), within an ERC Starting Grant (RISK – Republics on the Stage of Kings, principal investigator Prof. Alessandro Metlica). My research project deals with early modern Genoese Republicanism, and in particular on the connection between the Dutch Republic and Genoa between the end of the sixteenth and the beginning of the eighteenth century. I will be Visiting Researcher at the Univesity of Leiden from January to March 2019 thanks to a Scaliger Fellowship (project: Justus Lipsius’ works between Leiden and Genoa: Neo-Stoicism and Genoese Republicanism from the end of the sixteenth to the beginning of the seventeenth century).
Ekaterina Tereshko, The Lion as an Auto-Image of the Dutch in Russian Perception in the 18th Century. Lomonosov Moscow State University.
At all times people sought to seek patronage creating zoomorphic advocates. Such images of animals date back to the totem animals of antiquity, but by the eighteenth century, they had already changed into stereotypically perceived symbols enshrined in language and emblems. Different nations have chosen a representative animal, which was a carrier of some assigned to him and desired qualities. For the Netherland it was a lion, which was a national symbol for other European countries as well. The lion was used as symbol of courage and nobility.
The lion can be called the auto-image of the Netherlands, which was actively promoted in the eighteenth century outside the Netherlands. It was also known in Russia. But the concepts of the Dutch and the Russian lions do not quite match. Using the conceptual analysis of the image of lion in Russian language in the eighteenth century and the book Symbols and emblems, printed by decree of Peter the Great in Amsterdam in the same period, we would judge the perception of the Netherlands in Russia at that time.
My name is Ekaterina Tereshko, I’m 27 years old and I’m working as teacher Dutch language and literature at the Lomonosov Moscow State University in Russia. I’ve finished a BA- and two MA- programs at Ghent University (“Multilingual communication” Belgium, 2014) and Saint-Petersburg (“Modern European languages. German languages: Dutch”, Russia, 2015). Since 2016, I teach Dutch language, literature and culture at university level. Before that I’ve been teaching Dutch as a private teacher. Besides that, I work as interpreter and translator. Now I’m writing my PhD paper about animal stereotypes in the Dutch language.
Fons Meijer, The Charitable Dutchman: “Benevolence” as Dutch Character Trait in the French Era, 1806-1813. Radboud University Nijmegen.
During the French Era in the Netherlands, which lasted from 1806 till 1813, the country was hit by several major disasters. After all of these disasters, the Dutch collected funds to finance the relief efforts and the repair works, and to assist the victims in their suffering. In occasional, charitable poetry, these outbursts of solidarity were met with the glorification of ‘benevolence’ as a quintessential Dutch character trait, thus constructing the auto-image of the benevolent Dutchman.
In this paper, the image of the Dutch as benevolent in the French era will be put centre stage. I will first look at it from the perspective of the Dutch themselves, linking the auto-image of the ‘benevolent Dutchman’ to the rise of Enlightenment thinking and early national identity formation in the second half of the 18th century. It will be argued that, during the French era, the auto-image of the benevolent Dutchman took on new meaning and became key in the discourse of national uniqueness. Secondly, I will also look at the perspective of the French oppressor, in the persons of king Louis Napoleon and emperor Napoleon. Did they conceive of this outburst of national comradeship as a threat to their authority or not? It will become clear that the king and the emperor had opposing ideas about Dutch benevolence and how to deal with it, representing their ideals about effectively ruling the Dutch.
Fons Meijer (1994) completed a bachelor’s in History (2015) and a research master’s in Historical Studies (2017) at Radboud University, both with distinction (cum laude). During his studies, he focused on 19th and 20th century political and social history of Western Europe. Between September 2016 and February 2017, he studied at The University of Sheffield as a part of the Erasmus+ Programme. His PhD project focuses on the impact of disasters in the Netherlands in the nineteenth century (1807-1890) and is part of the research project ‘Dealing with Disasters in the Netherlands’. More information can be found on www.dealingwithdisasters.nl.
Panel 4: The Dutch and Their Colonies
Gertjan Schutte, Clashing Perspectives: Dutch Self-Images and Raynal’s Critique of Violence in the Dutch Colonies. European University Institute.
This paper explores the clash between the critique by foreigners of Dutch colonial practices and Dutch self-images in the 1770s and 1780s. It focuses on the way the French writer and critic Abbé Raynal (1713-1796) wrote about Dutch colonial expansion in his commercial bestseller Histoire des deux Indes (1770, 1774, and 1780) and on the reactions to these comments in the Dutch Republic.
The first part of this paper will concentrate on Raynal’s comments on Dutch colonial expansion as described in the three different versions of the Histoire des deux Indes that he edited during his lifetime. Raynal intended to criticise contemporary colonial practices rather than develop a principled argument against either colonisation or slavery. The intellectual and political motivations for Raynal’s stance can be found in French governmental discussions that took place in the 1760s on colonial reform. His descriptions of colonial reality in Dutch colonies, including the violence that occurred, was originally part of this French context.
The second part focuses on the circulation of Raynal’s comments on Dutch colonial practices, both in the original French and the Dutch translation (10 volumes, 1775-1783). Raynal’s descriptions of these practices appeared in two different debates. His critique of the Dutch East-India Company (VOC) was used by a group of commentators in favour of abolishing the VOC in order to create more competition in colonial trade. The Histoire des deux Indes touched a nerve in Dutch society by discussing the violent aspects of Dutch colonial rule, a topic that was subject of relatively marginal debates during the 1770s.
The third part will explain why both debates, the future of colonial expansion and colonial violence, were often but not always separate. It will also argue that Raynal and other ‘foreigners’ writing on Dutch colonial practices undermined this separation and challenged some aspects of Dutch self-images.
My name is Gertjan Schutte (1990). I received a MA in Early-modern intellectual history from the Erasmus University Rotterdam. I am a third-year doctoral researcher at the European University Institute in Florence. My PhD focuses on the intellectual history of political economy in the United Provinces between 1770 and 1787, focusing on the use of ‘foreign’ economic arguments and on the connections between different debates, including commerce, poverty and inequality.
Dariusz Kolodziejczyk, The Dutch Republic and the Dutch East Indies in the Eyes of a Pole: Anzelm Dzwonkowski and His Memoirs from the VOC Service in the Years 1789-1793. University of Warshaw.
Studies by Femme Gaastra and Roelof van Gelder have demonstrated that roughly half of the one million people employed by the VOC in the years 1602-1795 were foreigners, and this percentage was even higher among the military personnel. The VOC’s international character as far as its human resources are concerned was best visible in the Company’s final years: around 1770 no less than 80% of its soldiers were non-Dutch. Among the foreigners one finds especially Germans, but also Scandinavians, Hungarians, and Poles. One of the latter was Anzelm Dzwonkowski, born in 1764 in northern Mazovia, in a petty noble family as its youngest son. Having attended Piarist schools in Łomża and Warsaw, he chose a military career, yet instead of staying in Poland he entered Prussian service. In 1787, having heard of the Dutch Patriot Revolt he decided to join the conflict as a mercenary, ready to serve the party that would pay better, although in his memoirs he declared his sympathy towards the Patriot movement that he labeled as anti-absolutist. As the domestic conflict had been over when Dzwonkowski arrived at Amsterdam in 1788, instead he mustered into the VOC and served in the East Indian fleet until 1793, advancing from the rank of a corporal to one of an officer. In his memoirs, he describes his voyage, in which he visited Dutch colonies at Cape Town, Galle, Batavia, and even Ambon.
Dzwonkowski’s memoirs also contain a description of Holland, where he spent a few months before his trip, and his description is full of admiration, notwithstanding the critical opinion that later historiography was to adopt in regard to the pruikentijd. For Dzwonkowski, late eighteenth-century Amsterdam was still the trading capital of the world, drawing human capital even from distant European countries and enjoying consumer products imported from all corners of the globe.
Dariusz Kołodziejczyk is Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Warsaw and at the Polish Academy of Sciences. He has published extensively on the Ottoman Empire, the Crimean Khanate, international relations in Eastern Europe, and imperial frontiers. He is currently President of the Comité International des Études Pré-ottomanes et Ottomanes (CIEPO), member of the Academia Europaea, and honorary member of the Turkish Historical Society. He has been a Visiting Professor at the Collège de France, University of Notre Dame and Hokkaido University. His current project focuses on the presence of Central-Eastern Europeans in Asia, especially in the frameworks of the Jesuit Order and the Dutch East India Company.
Christin Simons, “No Enemy but Friends”? Dutch-Swedish Perceptions in the East India Trade in the 1730s. St. Andrews University.
When the Swedish East India Company (SOIC) in 1732 sent out their first ship Fridericus Rex Sueciae, it was intercepted in the Straits of Sunda by the Dutch Governor Dirk van Cloon under the allegation to operate as an interloping vessel of the abandoned Ostend Company. Director and Supercargo of the first Swedish East Indian Mission, Colin Campbell, described the incident as an “act of hostility without orders”. The Dutch, on the other hand, justified the seizure with rumors spread in Canton, which affected both Dutch and Swedish Images. In the following diplomatic dispute both countries had to redefine their respective Image to avoid further misconceptions.
During the 17th and 18th century, Dutch maritime trading success has had a significant impact on Swedish trading ambitions. As initiators of the Swedish South Company (Söderkompaniet) and their establishment at the Delaware under the Dutch Usselinx, Blommaert and Minuit or the Swedish African Company (SAK), where the Dutch West India Company served as a role model to establish a successful business strategy during the 17th century, Dutch interaction has, for a long time, shaped Swedish trade.
If it was this expertise or trade dispute, the Dutch have been influencing Swedish global trade in various forms. This paper will investigate the Dutch influence on the Swedish attempts to establish themselves on a global market in the 1730s and the subsequent Dutch Image of the Swedish East India Company.
Christin Simons is currently in the third year of her PhD in Modern History at St. Andrews University in Scotland, UK. She has obtained her BA and MA in History at Ruhr-University Bochum in Germany. Through her semester abroad in Sweden and year abroad in China she gained an interest for transnational history. Her current research therefore revolves around the Scandinavian Asiatic Companies in due consideration of the perception and recognition as “smugglers”, “interlopers” but also as “neutrals” by the Great East India Monopoly rivals such as the EIC and the VOC. In this context she aims to investigate in how far these Images were used by the Swedish and Danish East India Companies in evolving a business strategy to survive in the East India trade. At the moment she, together with Scott Carballo from the University of Strathclyde, is planning her first conference as an organizer of the International Port and Maritime Studies Network UK in April 2019.
Panel 5: Othering the Dutch
M.A. Katritzky, “A pot of Butter and a pickl’d Herring is all your Riches”: Othering the Dutch on the Early Modern Stage. Open University Milton Keynes.
John Dryden’s play of 1673, Amboyna, or the Cruelties of the Dutch to the English Merchants, from which the title quote is taken, has been identified as a watershed in English dramatic representations of the Dutch, as individuals and as a nation. Dryden’s epilogue caustically dismisses the Republics of the Dutch and the Venetians, with the royalist assertion that “only two kings’ touch can cure the tumour”. Neither friendly, nor even simply drunk and incompetent, Dryden positions his Dutchmen as members of a nation whose threat, to England and the English, is portrayed as being very real. According to Joseph F Stephenson: “the Dutch in Amboyna play the exact role that the Spanish played in many familiar Renaissance dramas, a loathed enemy […] The Dutch were the hated foe, the sworn enemy, the demonized “other”— just as the Spanish had been during Elizabeth’s time.” (2014).
Dryden demonizes the Dutch for their aggressive successes as England’s competitors in numerous important political and economic spheres: and most notably as colonialists, merchant seamen and herring fishermen. By the 1670s, these specific rivalries were already causing long-running resentments between the two nations. With reference to 17th and 18th century Dutch-inspired English stage characters, and in particular, drawing on my extensive researches into the complex origins and connotations of the travelling English players’ stage clown Pickelhering, I will reconsider Amboyna’s othering of the Dutch. Rather than being viewed as a sharply critical new recasting of essentially positive Dutch buffoons familiar from previous English drama, it may perhaps be seen as developing negativities already deeply embedded in many of these earlier stereotypes.
M.A. Katritzky is the Barbara Wilkes Research Fellow in Theatre Studies in the English Department of The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK; former Fellow: Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Herzog August Library, and NIAS (Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study), and currently serving as Visiting Professor at the University of Trier (DFG Forschergruppe 2539). Books include: Healing, performance and ceremony in the writings of three early modern physicians: Hippolytus Guarinonius and the brothers Felix and Thomas Platter (2012), Women, medicine and theatre 1500-1750: literary mountebanks and performing quacks (2007) and The Art of commedia: a study in the commedia dell’arte 1560-1620 with special reference to the visual records (2006).
Lars de Bruin, Defaming the Dutch: the discourse of Hollandophobia in Williamite England (1688-1702). Leiden University.
The seventeenth century saw the rise of growing tensions and conflict between England and the Dutch Republic. During the three Anglo-Dutch Wars, English pamphleteers developed an elaborate negative national stereotype of the Dutch in print, encompassing insults, accusations and character assassination. This Hollandophobia was used to vilify the Dutch enemy and to increase popular support for the government’s wars. The negative image of the Dutch evolved over time, ever adapting to cater to the needs of the pamphleteers as a result of changing historical contexts. This presentation discusses how the anti-Dutch stereotype of the seventeenth century stereotype was used and reused in England during the reign of William III, moving into the long eighteenth century. Numerous pamphlets appeared to condemn the Dutch alliance, rehearsing derogatory tropes and repeating old works of print. The Hollandophobic stereotype was mostly propagated in political tractates, contrary to most of the seventeenth century, when poems and character pamphlets had been the most popular. Four themes loomed large in these tractates: the role of religion during the Glorious Revolution, the idea of a secret Dutch plot to ruin England, the large numbers of foreigners flooding the country and the immoral an un-English nature of William III. Anti-Dutch sentiment continued to find its way in works of print during the rest of William’s reign, condemning the Dutch king and the Dutch alliance. This opposition, together with the propaganda of the Anglo-Dutch Wars and the large amount of intertextuality between sources, helped to create a long-lasting negative stereotype of the Dutch that lingered in the eighteenth century, even when the enemy image of the ‘Other’ was no longer topical.
Lars de Bruin studied early modern history at Leiden University, graduating cum laude in 2018. His main interests are Anglo-Dutch history and national stereotyping in early modernity. Currently he is employed as a policy officer at the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).
Daniel Horst, Butterboxes and Cheesemongers: The Caricature of the Dutch as Producers of Cheese and Butter in Foreign Political Cartoons. Rijksmuseum Amsterdam.
In past research in imagology and national representation the focus has mostly been on the creation and promotion of the self-image of the Netherlands during in the nineteenth century, the age of growing nationalism. But what was the foreign perspective of the Dutch?
In this presentation I would like to present some results of my research on the image of the Dutch in foreign political cartoons. I will discuss one aspect in foreign propaganda prints, political cartoons (‘spotprenten’), namely the characterization and ridicule of the Dutch as producers and excessive consumers of dairy products. This image was not only used as a negative stereotype by foreign printmakers to attack the Netherlands but was also an image which the Dutch promoted themselves in a positive way at the same time.
My talk will focus on the use of these images in the context of political and military campaigns by the English against the Dutch Republic in the three Anglo-Dutch wars of the 17th century and by the French during the Franco-Dutch War (1672-1678).
This will be followed by an exploration of the continuation of the use of the image of the Dutch cheese as a symbol for the Dutch and the Netherlands in propaganda prints in relation to other conflicts involving the Dutch in the 18th and 19th centuries, and especially in the anti-Dutch prints from the Belgian Revolt in 1830-1831.
Daniel Horst (16-02-1958), since 2010 researcher (wetenschappelijk medewerker) for the History Department at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. PhD at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in 2000 on Propaganda prints from the Dutch Revolt (1566-1584). Areas of expertise: religious and political printed cartoons and propaganda in relation to Dutch history.