De politieke taak van Nederlandse letterkunde. Van natiestaat tot urbaniciteit – van taal als ui naar taal als strijdtoneel

Frans-Willam Korsten


The study of Dutch language and literature has had a political function from the very beginning of its institutionalisation, a beginning that is clearly marked by the construction of a democratic nation-state. One question is what has become of such a political function when we consider The Netherlands less as a nation-state and rather as a densely urbanized international centre with urban spokes in all directions. Another question is what has become of the study of Dutch language and literature when the state has been retreating as part of neo-liberal agendas that have deeply influenced the humanities. Instead of lamenting the fact that, nationally, less and less students choose the study of Dutch language and literature we could perhaps better use our energy to think through what a newly formulated political task of this study could be. The article proposes that we consider Dutch language and literature as media by means of which people can meet in conflict, politically speaking.

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© Tijdschrift voor Nederlandse Taal- en Letterkunde | ISSN (print): 0040-7550 | eISSN (online): 2212-0521