||6 July to 20 July 2019
|Recommended course combination
||Session 2: Hands-on Anthropology and Ethnographic Storytelling, The Heart of Capitalism: Amsterdam 1600-Present
Session 3: Minding Music, Making Sound
|Co-ordinating lecturers||Prof. Susan Legêne and Prof. Anthony Bogues, Prof. dr Wayne Modest
|Other lecturers||Dr Dienke Hondius, Dr Judy Jaffe-Schagen and guest lecturers|
|Form(s) of tuition||Interactive seminar, lectures, fieldwork|
|Form(s) of assessment||Presentation, short paper, peer review
‘Decolonizing Europe’ takes a fresh approach to current debates surrounding notions of citizenship, belonging and the colonial past within postcolonial, post-WWII and post-Cold War Europe. Strongly embedded in histories of critical thought, museology, and heritage studies, it also benefits from the location of the city of Amsterdam, as a meaningful location for in-depth discussions of the dynamics of history, memory, representation and redress. Some of the key concepts to be discussed will be:
• Colonial modernity and decolonization
• Humans, racial formation and classification
• Colonial empires, citizenship and belonging
• Archives, objects and art
• Redress and memory
In terms of genealogies of critical thought, the course focuses on the works of Caribbean and African diasporic thinkers: scholars, writers and artists who have engaged critically with European intellectual traditions. We explore how they formulated distinctive positions that inform current museological, artistic and academic practices related to questions of citizenship and belonging in Europe. By honing in on their works, and relating it to your own research projects, you will gain a deeper historical understanding of the global interactions that shaped contemporary societies. Recent developments in Amsterdam, a city deeply affected by the Holocaust, a long colonial history, a complex migratory history and the Dutch relationship with other difficult pasts, are explored in a program full of engaging lectures and discussions.
Active participation is an important aspect of this course. In both plenary and workshop sessions, you will engage in critical discussions with your peers and expert staff on Europe’s colonial legacies, focusing specifically on archives and museums. We will explore some of the critical debates in the history of thought, the trans-Atlantic slave trade, enslavement and colonialism, post-colonial and labour migration, urban identities, race and “post-racialism”, anti-Semitism, diaspora, citizenship and belonging. The course seeks to provide alternative histories, and present different archives as ways to think about the past and the present. The programme will enable you to work on your own ongoing project and receive feedback from staff and peers.
Decolonizing Europe is offered jointly by the Global History, Heritage and Memory programme at VU University Amsterdam and the Center for Slavery and Justice at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island. Its co-organizer is the Research Center for Material Culture of the Dutch National Museum of World Cultures.