Mayor Apologies

Today marks a significant occasion. The mayor of Amsterdam, Femke Halsema, has made official apologies for ‘the active involvement of the Amsterdam city council in the commercial system of colonial slavery and the worldwide trade in enslaved persons.’ Significant because this is the first official apology. 148 years after the abolition of slavery in Suriname… Continue reading Mayor Apologies

ARE JEWS WHITE? (III): GLORIA, or the two sides of invisibility

Inviting professor Gloria Wekker – known for her work about racism in the Netherlands, critical race theory and intersectionality – to be part of our video installation was an exciting move. I was particularly eager to hear her reflections about (the troubles of) the Jewish position in the anti-racism movements, her analysis of the status… Continue reading ARE JEWS WHITE? (III): GLORIA, or the two sides of invisibility

ARE JEWS WHITE? (II): STEPHAN, or the black/white story

It was clear to me that we needed to include personal testimonies in the exhibition ‘Are Jews white?’ in order to give the subject matter depth and breadth. It would simply not suffice to approach the question in a purely analytical manner. Some deceptively straightforward questions simply defy yes or no answers. When dealing with… Continue reading ARE JEWS WHITE? (II): STEPHAN, or the black/white story

ARE JEWS WHITE? (I): JELLE, or the Olympics of oppression

When reflecting on the position of Jews in identity politics, competition rather than solidarity seems to be a determining factor. It reveals itself through rhetoric like: ‘So you think you are oppressed? Well, put yourself in my shoes and see how much worse it is to be me!’. Rhetoric rooted in the fallacy that there… Continue reading ARE JEWS WHITE? (I): JELLE, or the Olympics of oppression

Eyes white shut

Although the opening of the exhibition ‘Are Jews white?’ has been postponed until the 9th of June, this week marks the beginning of public attention for the topic with a debate programme ‘Strange Bedfellows’ in De Balie and several Dutch national newspapers running articles on the subject. ‘Are Jews white?’ tackles the uncomfortable position of… Continue reading Eyes white shut

96 cents for change

Today, a letter went out to the Dutch Parliament on behalf of a broad and diverse coalition of minority groups, including Black, Muslim, Asian, Roma and Sinti, refugee and Jewish voices. Actually, I am proud to say that I was the one that printed the final version and put it in an envelope. A letter… Continue reading 96 cents for change

119 Colourful Recommendations

Following in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, I witnessed Jewish organisations (mostly in America, but also in the UK) taking a public stance on anti-black racism almost immediately and standing in solidarity with their fellow black communities. In doing so, what became especially apparent is that there is an overlap in these… Continue reading 119 Colourful Recommendations