1 August 2020
on course website
Amsterdam in Global Capitalism: 1500-Present
Capitalism from its origins operated on a global scale, but it has also always produced dynamic centres of wealth and power. From 1600 onwards, for a long time Amsterdam was at the heart of this process. Today, Amsterdam still is a major player in the capitalist world. This course explores your host city’s role in the rise of capitalism and the relationship – then and now – between its economic fortunes and its spatial, social and cultural development.
The framework of this course is the new scholarship on capitalism, that investigates the global, often violent dimensions of capitalist development, and looks at the role of “global cities” as key hubs within this. Since the development of capitalism is now considered part of a wider web of social relations, power structures, ecological processes, belief systems and cultural practices, we cover several centuries and many aspects of history: social, economic, business, political, cultural and environmental history as well as the history of war and slavery.
As a long-established centre of capitalism, Amsterdam is the perfect place to study this innovative approach in situ, and to look in greater depth at the relationship between the development of capitalism and the urban environment. We will address questions such as how the ups and downs of Amsterdam as a hotbed of capitalism affected the spatial, social and cultural development of the city and how the urban ambience influenced the role of Amsterdam in the capitalist world, especially in terms of city planning, social inequality, flows of migration and flows of finance. In doing so, we will engage with ongoing discussions among historians, social scientists and policy makers about the changing functions of “global cities”.
Active participation is an important aspect of this course, as you examine and critically assess key ideas, debates and methodologies in the field. Excursions to heritage sites related to Amsterdam’s history as the “heart of capitalism” will help you to place the subject in a historical and present-day context.
Dr Pepijn Brandon and guests such as Prof. Dr. Karel Davids, Dr. Sabine Go, Prof. Dr. Marjolein 't Hart and Prof. Dr. Bastiaan van Apeldoorn.
Primarily students and professionals in the field of Humanities and Social Sciences, but interested participants from other backgrounds are also welcome. If you have doubts about your eligibility for the course, please let us know. Our courses are multi-disciplinary and therefore are open to students and professionals with a wide variety of backgrounds.
At the end of this course you will:
- Be able to understand the long-term history of capitalism.
- Understand the relationship between large-scale economic changes and the social hierarchy, social tensions, creativity, consumer culture and spatial order in global cities.
- Be familiar with theoretical concepts and methodologies for the study of capitalism and urban developments.
- Be familiar with the interrelationships between the development of Amsterdam and the history of capitalism.
Contact Hours: 45
Do you want to make the most out of your summer? You can combine this course with a course in session 1 to create a 4-week Summer School in Amsterdam.
EUR 1150: The tuition fee includes:
• Airport pick-up service
• Welcome goodie bag
• Orientation programme and lunch on course days
• Course excursions
• On-site support
• Emergency assistance
• Transcript of records and certificate 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 two sessions. If you combine 2 courses you will receive €200 discount. All courses include excursions. We will also organise 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 optional social programme is not included in the tuition fee.
Furnished accommodation is available. Various housing options will be offered.
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.Register for this course
on course website