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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Dutch Studies Program

UC Berkeley

In the Jungle of Amsterdam. On the Re-Invention of Dutch Identity


The Netherlands used to be considered a European model for progressiveness and for the successful integration of immigrants. However, the murders of the politician Pim Fortuyn (in 2002) and the filmmaker Theo van Gogh (in 2004) have forced the country to reconsider its policy. The self-confidence of the past has recently given way to a critical reflection on Dutch identity. The achievements of globalization, multiculturalism and even the European Union have been called into question and the country has adopted a much more restrictive immigration policy. In contemporary Dutch literature, however, an alternative voice can be heard.

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