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DUTC2300 - Multiculturalism and Identity

Value: 0.5 course units

Tutor: Gerdi Quist

Assessment: two essays weighed at 50% each

Available to: While it is mainly aimed at students of Dutch, the module is open to all students. Knowledge of Dutch is not required.

In this course we look at debates surrounding multiculturalism, identity, citizenship and immigration. We look at different interpretations of multiculturalism as philosophical perspectives on the relationships between different cultural communities. The course explores how these perspectives have been acted out across time and place, from the ‘meltingpot’ idea in the US in the early 20th century to governmental policies encouraging immigrants to maintain their home language and culture. The focus will be on the changing policies and views on the multicultural debate in the Netherlands, but this will be set in a global context. We also explore the notions of national identity which are evoked in the multicultural debate and look at government and media responses to this, such as the implementation of the canon of the Dutch history as part of the curriculum at schools. This module will use academic articles as well as media reports, government reports and policy documents. Students will also look at film, art and autobiographies where appropriate.

Selected bibliography:

  • Appia, K.A. (2005) The Ethics of Identity. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
  • Bhabha, H.K. (ed) (1993) Nation and Narration. London: Routledge.
  • Hirsi Ali, A. (2010) Nomad. New York: Free Press.
  • Buruma, I. (2006) Murder in Amsterdam. London: Atlantic Books.
  • Minnaard, L. (2009) New Germans, New Dutch: Literary Interventions. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.
  • Parekh, B. (2000,2006) Rethinking Multiculturalism. Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Parekh, B. (2006) European Liberalism and ‘the Muslim Question’. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.
  • [https://openaccess.leidenuniv.nl/bitstream/1887/12641/1/paper_Parekh.pdf]
  • Scheffer, P. (2000) The multicultural fiasco. In NRC Handelsblad.
  • Timmermans, F. (2009) The Limits of Live and Let Live. In Newsweek.
  • Van de Vaart, R. (2009) Geographical Imagination within Dutch historical self-representation:the case of the cultural canon of the Netherlands.
  • Films: ‘Fitna’ by Geert Wilders and ‘Submission’ by Theo van Gogh/Ayaan Hirsi Ali.
  • Dutch canon: www.entoen.nu