The Top 7 Literature Stories of the Year
Join us in bidding goodbye to 2022 with seven of the finest literature stories we published this year that are worth re-reading or listening to again.
Marieke Lucas Rijneveld: Ripe For The Picking
© Jook Oosterhof
Marieke Lucas Rijneveld is one of the greatest new talents in Dutch literature and in 2020 the first Dutch winner ever of the prestigious International Booker Prize. We asked Michele Hutchison to translate a poem from Rijneveld’s newest collection of poetry Komijnsplitsers (The Cumin-splitters).
Dutch Indies Literature in the Twenty-First Century
© KITLV, Leiden / Europalia Indonesia
Since Max Havelaar, Dutch Indies writing constitutes some of the best that the Netherlands has to offer in the literary field. It still plays off colonial myths and realities against each other, and finds words for painful, half-forgotten things.
Little People as Pawns in Politics
© Geert Snoeijer
Lisa Weeda has emerged in Dutch news outlets as an expert on the war in Ukraine. This has to do with her excellent debut novel Aleksandra, which tells the story of a divided Cossack family.
James Joyce’s Summer Holiday in Ostend
On 16 June, James Joyce and his most famous novel Ulysses were celebrated for the first time in Ostend during Bloomsday. In 1926, Joyce spent a summer holiday in Belgium's largest coastal town. He wrote letters and postcards to his friends while there.
The Angel Who Comes Bearing Pain
© Merlijn Doomernik
Arnon Grunberg has received the prestigious PC Hooft Prize 2022 for his extensive and diverse oeuvre. In his work, the writer combines horror and tenderness, satire with sincerity. He challenges readers with his confrontational worlds, in which characters succumb to oppressive systems.
Dying for Design
In Bold Ventures, her award-winning prose debut, Charlotte Van den Broeck tells the story of tragic architects who committed suicide in or because of the buildings they designed. She boldly searches for a depth rarely encountered nowadays, one necessary for calling yourself an artist.
Hidden Slavery Story Translated Into English for First Time
A Dutch graphic novel revealing new insight into the lives of millions of Africans who fell victim to the trans-Atlantic slave trade has been brought to English speakers across the globe for the first time, thanks to modern languages students at the University of Sheffield.
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© Marianne Hommersom
Calm Before the Storm
Flemish-Dutch cultural organisation deBuren invited eighteen young writers from the Low Countries to bring nineteenth-century artefacts from the Rijksmuseum to life. They all wrote a story in response to the question: what do you see when you look at these objects through the lens of impending doom?
Young Writers on Invisible Labour
Eighteen young Flemish and Dutch authors give a voice to nineteenth-century artefacts from the Rijksmuseum. They have taken inspiration from the question: what do you see when you look at these objects with an eye for invisible labour?
In this monthly column, we draw attention to literary debuts from Flemish and Dutch writers which garnered less notice upon release than they deserve.
Every other Friday we treat you to beautiful verses by a poet from Flanders or the Netherlands. Sometimes an old forgotten poem, but mostly fresh verses by a young or unpublished poet.
Students at the University of Sheffield wonder how they can bring to the fore the names and stories of the marginalized of Dutch colonial exploitation. Focal point is Quaco, the enslaved footboy of British-Dutch Captain John Gabriel Stedman.