High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

Publications

High Road to Culture in Flanders and the Netherlands

Series

Brussels Lab

In this series, we present the capital of Belgium and Europe as a breeding ground for new artistic, political and societal developments.

Article

Dagmar Dirkx: A Brilliant Mess

Eighteen young writers have brought artefacts from the Rijksmuseum to life. Dagmar Dirkx looks at the painting 'Monk Meditating near a Ruin by Moonlight' by Frederik Marinus Kruseman.

Article

Museum MORE Ensures Rehabilitation Of Realism

Museum MORE specializes in a movement that has long been ignored: realism. If that is not enough reason to travel to Gelderland, there is always the world's largest collection of works by Carel Willink.

Article

Must-Sees in the Year of Jan Van Eyck

In 2020 Flanders is set to pay tribute to Jan van Eyck. The most impressive tribute to this Flemish Master will be presented in Ghent, where the Museum of Fine Arts is organising its biggest ever Jan van Eyck exhibition.

Article

Why Flanders Is Mad about Cycling

Flanders has been synonymous with bicycle racing for many years, but is cycling truly ‘ours’, as one popular Flemish newspaper keeps claiming?

Article

#4 - Charles in Charge

On our journey exploring the history of the Low Countries, we can't forget the 'Father of Europe': Charlemagne or Charles the Great.

Article

The Battle of the Gravensteen

The only remaining medieval castle in Flanders with a virtually intact defence system faces a new threat.

Article

The Top 7 History Stories of the Year

Join us in bidding goodbye to 2022 with seven of the finest history stories we published this year that are worth re-reading or listening to again.

Article

The Rise of the Citizen Historian

Universities are increasingly calling upon volunteer researchers or citizen historians for large-scale history projects. Do they close the gap between academia and society?

Article

All Roads Lead to Tongeren

On a visit to the oldest city in Belgium, Derek Blyth discovers a Roman road sign, a lost river and a hoard of antique hunters.

Article

#1 - 99% of Dutch History

Join us on our journey throughout the history of the Netherlands. We start in so-called "pre-history".

Article

Football Fans and a Farting Dog

Since it was established in 1971, ‘De Engelbewaarder’ has been known as the first literary café in the Netherlands. Not only John Irving once drank a beer there.

Article

For Extremists of All Kinds, Jews Are a Target

Don’t start shouting that ‘we’re back in the 1930s again’, writes Fraihi. That sort of warning is counterproductive and even risks gaining the status of forbidden fruit.

Article

#16 - The Fishy History of Dutch Herring

Eating herring is a Dutch tradition. This silvery, slimy fish is even part of their national identity, thanks to a myth about a humble herring fisherman.

Article

When Did New York Stop Speaking Dutch?

Despite the English conquest of the northeast coast of North America in 1664, the Dutch language continued to thrive in New York and northern New Jersey for generations, persisting into the twentieth century in certain areas.

Article

The 'Black Pete' of W.B. Yeats

For some, he was a servant, for others a vanquished devil. However, the Irish poet W.B. Yeats sheds a different light on the origins of the controversial Black Pete tradition.

Series

Our Colonial Legacy

What is today's relationship between the Low Countries and their colonial past? The articles in this series have been written by personalities from the Netherlands, Indonesia, Suriname, Belgium and Congo.

Article

Holy Halle!

On a visit to the Flemish city of Halle, Derek Blyth discovers a miraculous statue, a forgotten Flemish artist and an intriguing street art trail.

Article

Eileen Stevens’ Choice: Gerard Reve and Machteld Siegmann

Every month, a translator of Dutch into English gives literary tips by answering two questions: which translated book by a Flemish or Dutch author should everyone read? And, which book absolutely deserves an English translation?

Article

The St Matthew Passion Is About Us

Why our we still fascinated with a commemorative work like the St Matthew Passion that was written almost three hundred years ago?

Article

Antwerp's Expunged Protestant Past

Two Antwerp monks were burned at the stake five hundred years ago because of their Lutheran beliefs. Their deaths remind us of a piece of the faded religious past of the Low Countries.

Article

The Colonial Debate in the Netherlands in Four Monuments

What did the Dutch know, through the ages, about what went on in their colonies, in the East and West Indies? Ewald Vanvught gives an outline of the current changing view of the colonial period in the Netherlands with reference to four monu...

Article

Peeling the Onion in Aalst

On a visit to the Flemish city of Aalst, Derek Blyth discovers a Carnival parade that likes to shock, a priest that took on the factory bosses and a utopian library.

Article

Kortrijk Earns It Spurs

Calling Kortrijk a hidden pearl along the river Lys might be too much honour. Yet there are numerous treasures to be found.

Article

Etty Hillesum: a Life Interrupted, a Spirit Unperturbed

The Amsterdam house where Jewish writer Etty Hillesum wrote her famous diary during WWII is in danger of being demolished. Philippe Noble, who translated her work into French, tells us why the writings she left behind are still as powerful ...

Article

Sulaiman Addonia Reimagines Brussels

When Sulaiman Addonia moved to Brussels, he felt thrown back into the time of Oliver Twist. But the author gradually changed, and with him his multi-layered view of the city.

Article

Gear Up For Oudenaarde

Derek Blyth discovers a battlefield that shaped European history, a cafe dedicated to cycle racing and a tapestry with a secret message.

Article

The Leuven Is Easy

On a visit to the university town of Leuven, Derek Blyth discovers one of Europe’s smartest cities, some of Belgium’s best bars and a walk that takes you to the edge of time.

Article

How Missing Soldiers Regain Their Identity

An exhibition at the In Flanders Fields Museum shows how missing soldiers of the First World War have got their identity back thanks to archaeological and historical research.

Article

A Sea Change in Ostend

On a visit to the Flemish coastal town of Ostend, Derek Blyth discovers grand architecture, a world-famous soul singer and the perfect shrimp croquette.

Article

James Ensor, Rebel For All Times

James Ensor was not just a crazy, angry, solitary painter of masks, he was also an authentic rebel who spent a lifetime using his voice to champion values that still hold true today.

Article

The Sweet Pleasures of Lier

Derek Blyth discovers a wedding that changed history, the world’s most complex clock and some of life’s sweet pleasures.

Article

Don’t Worry, Be Hasselt

On a trip to the capital of the Belgian province of Limburg, Derek Blyth finds comforting food, innovative architecture and 25 places to be happy.

Article

Ode to Mechelen

On a trip to Mechelen, Derek Blyth discovers lost mediaeval rivers, Beethoven’s Flemish roots and the world’s oldest carillon school.

Article

Ypres Marches On

On a visit to the Flemish city of Ypres, Derek Blyth discovers a museum dedicated to the horror of war, a beer brewed in an underground fortification and a nightly ceremony that might go on for ever.

Article

Lucky Luke, a World-Famous Cowboy From Flanders

The most Belgian of all comic strip cowboys has enjoyed international success since his debut in 1946, with millions of albums sold. Even today, a quarter of a century after the death of his creator.

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