The discomfort surrounding talks on historic and present-day racism in class

Image from a Dutch high school history book. Photo by author. By Sientje Trip When browsing through one of the history books of the high school I researched I came across some paragraphs on the Dutch colonial and concomitant slavery history, on the VOC and the WIC. It describes the so called triangle trade between Europe, Africa and The Americas and the way enslaved Africans were fitted with as many as possible in big ships with Dutch flags. Later on in my fieldwork, I asked one of the teachers at the high school if this slavery history can be hard …

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copyright Yatou Sallah

Photo Essay: Finding a place for historical nostalgia in Postcolonial Anthropology

by Yatou Sallah I have long been intrigued by the anthropological framing of Africans in the context of postcolonialism. As scholars and theorists in the field attempt to uncover the remnants of the horrendous control and exploitation of beings, bodies and resources, they paint communities in the Global South as figures who are and ought to be making their way out from underneath the heavy rubble of colonialism. Studying Anthropology at the VU and reading texts by Ferguson, Fanon, Chakrabarty, and those alike, students are taught to see through the narrative that the structures of colonialism have been dismantled. Instead …

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Podcast # 2 is online! Guest: Aleeha Ali

In this episode, Puck de Boer talks with Aleeha Ali, who studied sociology in Pakistan, did a research master’s in anthropology in the UK and is currently a PhD candidate at the department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the VU. Topics include:-Aleeha’s research on digitization of religious mourning among Shi’a Muslims in Europe – even more relevant in times of Covid-19.-Her experiences in different educational systems.-The diversification of perspectives in a postcolonial anthropology.-What characterizes anthropology and how it relates to other disciplines.-Conducting (digital) ethnographic fieldwork during a pandemic. The close listener might notice a difference in the sound quality …

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Schilderij van Thomas Matulesia (Pattimura) en medestrijders in het Museum Siwalima, Ambon (Indonesië). Foto uit collectie Moluks Historisch Museum, Den Haag.

Pattimura dag en een complexe Molukse loyaliteit

Door Fridus Steylen. April en juni zijn hoogtijmaanden voor aandacht voor de geschiedenis van Molukkers in Nederland. Op 25 april wordt de proclamatie van de Republik Maluku Selatan, de vrije Zuid-Molukse republiek, in 1950 gevierd. Op 11 juni 1977 werd de gekaapte trein in De Punt gewelddadig ontzet, waarbij zes kapers en twee gegijzelden omkwamen. Publiciteit is gegarandeerd, zeker als er nog meer gebeurt. Zo was er dit jaar als een opwarmertje begin april protest tegen de mogelijke komst van een niet-Molukse huurder in de Molukse wijk in Heer/Maastricht. De RMS-viering in Apeldoorn kreeg extra publiciteit omdat theater Orpheus de …

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What is troubling anthropology?

By Matthias Teeuwen            Inspired by Paul Stoller’s 2017 blog ‘Doing Anthropology In Troubled Times’, the goal of this year’s ‘Dag van de Antropologie’ (Annual Anthropology Day) was to reflect upon the role of anthropology in some particularly challenging social issues of today such as decolonisation. This was taken up in various panels and workshops such as the opening panel on ‘Decolonising Anthropology’ and the closing keynote on ‘Racist Sorcery’. Throughout the day I tried to get a feel for what is exactly troubling about these times and what about it is troubling for anthropologists in particular. As the first panel discussion …

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