Amsterdam, Netherlands

Decolonizing Europe: History, Memory, Redress (in collaboration with the Center for Slavery & Justice at Brown University)

when 4 July 2020 - 18 July 2020
language English
duration 2 weeks
credits 3 EC
fee EUR 1150

‘Decolonizing Europe’ takes a fresh approach to current debates surrounding notions of citizenship, belonging and the colonial past within postcolonial, post-WWII and post-Cold War Europe. You will get to know the city of Amsterdam as a meaningful location for in depth discussions of historical and contemporary dynamics of representation, memory and redress. Some of the key concepts to be discussed will be:
- Colonial modernity and Decolonization
- Racial Formation and modernity
- Nationalism, colonial empires and citizenship
- Archive, Heritage, Redress and Memory

The course focuses on the works of Caribbean and African diasporic thinkers: scholars, writers and artists who have engaged critically with European intellectual traditions, formulating distinctive positions that constitute an alternative genealogy for questions of citizenship and belonging in Europe. By honing in on their works, you gain a deeper understanding of the global interactions at key historical moments that shaped contemporary Europe. Recent developments in Amsterdam, a city deeply affected by the Holocaust, a long colonial history, a complex migratory history and the Netherlands relationship with other difficult pasts are explored in a program full of engaging lectures and discussions.

Active participation is an important aspect of this course. In both plenary and workshop sessions, you will engage in critical discussions with your peers and expert staff on Europe’s colonial legacies, focusing specifically on archives and museums. We will explore some of the critical debates in the history of thought, the trans-Atlantic slave trade, enslavement and colonialism, post-colonial and labour migration, urban identities, race and “post-racialism”, anti-Semitism, diaspora, citizenship and belonging. The course seeks to provide alternative histories, and present different archives as ways to think about the past and the present.

Course leader

Prof. Susan Legêne and Prof. Anthony Bogues

Target group

Primarily students and professionals in the field of Humanities and Social Sciences, although interested participants from other backgrounds are also welcome. Advanced Bachelor students are welcome, but only Honours students. The course is highly intensive and demands active participation and strong motivation. Our courses are multi-disciplinary and therefore are open to students and professionals with a wide variety of backgrounds.

Course aim

At the end of the course you:
•Understand the changing European polity and its links to European colonial, postcolonial and migration histories, including the histories of slavery.
•Understand Amsterdam’s role as a major European urban centre, both historically and in the present, including issues of citizenship and belonging here.
•Are familiar with radical African/Caribbean diasporic thought as part of broader anticolonial and postcolonial critique, and how this thought has been important to refiguring notions of citizenship and belonging in Europe.
•Are familiar with the ideas of Dutch Caribbean intellectuals in relation to broader Black and Caribbean radical intellectual thought.
•Are familiar with the works of Dutch artists and other creative thinkers whose work addresses contemporary Europe.
•Are familiar with theoretical concepts about reframing the archive, both within the city of Amsterdam and more generally.
•Are familiar with the methodology of a various practices of alternative histories.

Credits info

3 EC
Contact Hours: 45
If you want to earn more credits you can take courses in our other sessions to create a 4 or 6 week programme.

Fee info

EUR 1150: The tuition fee includes an airport pick-up service, welcome goodiebag, orientation programme, on-site support, 24/7 emergency assistance, and a transcript of records after completion of the course.

An early bird discount of €150 is available for students who apply before 15 March, and students from VU Amsterdam as well as from exchange partner universities will receive a €250 discount. You apply for the discount simply by indicating that you are currently a student at VU Amsterdam or at a partner university in the online application.

All courses include excursions. We will also organize trips and excursions as part of our social programme, which is a great way to get to know your fellow students and learn more about Amsterdam and the Netherlands. The social programme is not included in the tuition fee.

Furnished accommodation is available. Various housing options will be offered.
EUR 0: The tuition fee includes:
• Airport pick-up service
• Welcome goodie bag
• Orientation programme
• Course excursions
• On-site support
• Emergency assistance
• Transcript of records after completion of the course

An early bird discount of €150 is available for students who apply and pay before 15 March, and students from VU Amsterdam as well as from exchange partner universities will receive a €250 discount. You apply for the discount simply by indicating that you are currently a student at VU Amsterdam or at a partner university in the online application.

There are also discounts for students who attend multiple sessions, combine 2 courses and receive a €200 discount and combine 3 to receive a €300 discount. All courses include excursions. We will also organize trips and excursions as part of our social programme, which is a great way to get to know your fellow students and learn more about Amsterdam and the Netherlands. The social programme is not included in the tuition fee.

Furnished accommodation is available. Various housing options will be offered.

Scholarships

VU Amsterdam Summer School offers three kinds of scholarships: the Academic Scholarship, the Photographer Scholarship and the Vlogger/Videographer Scholarship. More information can be found on the VU Amsterdam Summer School website.