Blacks in the Dutch World: The Evolution of Racial Imagery in a Modern Society
Indiana University Press, 1993 - 327 pagina's
Now in paperback!
Blacks in the Dutch World
Examination of the development of racial attitudes and color prejudice.
"In Blacks in the Dutch World Blakely provides scholars with a valuable record--in word and image--of the complex interaction between Dutch history and black history even as it examines, sensitively and persuasively, some of the intricate combinations of factors which are involved in color bias and its cultural expression." --Catherine Levesque, New West Indian Guide/Nieuwe West-Indische Gids
"... provocative and exceptionally well written--a significant contribution to the history of Dutch overseas expansion." --Johannes Postma, Journal of Interdisciplinary History
"This is a very interesting, well-written, and thoroughly researched study based on a great variety of sources." --Choice
Blacks in the Dutch World examines the interaction between Black history and Dutch history to gain an understanding of the development of racial attitudes. Allison Blakely reveals cracks in the self-image and reputation of Dutch society as a haven for those escaping intolerance. Pervasive images of "the Moor" and "the noble savage" appear in Dutch art and popular culture; and "Black Pete" is a servant to Santa Claus in Dutch Christmas tradition. These and many other cultural artifacts reflect the racial stereotyping of Blacks that existed in the Dutch world through the time of slavery and servitude, and then freedom.
Blakely weighs the proposition that factors unique to the modern period have contributed to the creation of this racial imagery in Dutch folklore, art, literature, and religion. By viewing evolving images of Blacks against the backdrop of Western expansion, the agricultural, scientific, and industrial revolutions, and the advent of modern secular doctrines, Blakely discovers that humanism and liberalism, hallmarks of Dutch society since medieval times, have been imperfect guardians against racial bias.
Allison Blakely, Professor of European History and Comparative History at Howard University, is author of Russia and the Negro: Blacks in Russian History and Thought, winner of an American Book Award.
Blacks in the Diaspora--Darlene Clark Hine, John McCluskey, Jr.,
March 2001 (cloth 1994)
Wat mensen zeggen - Een review schrijven
On page 43 of his book "Blacks in the Dutch World” (1993) Allison Blakely says:
"In heathen teaching the dark also was the color of death and of winter”.
Despite that remark he concludes – without offering any evidence for his thesis – that everywhere that Dutch folklore mentions a black or a black man or a Moor, that it is about someone originating from (equatorial) Africa. It is remarkable that nobody told him that he is wrong and corrected his wrong conclusions.
Even when the fishermen that arrive in the harbor of the island Terschelling are called 'blanke negers' in the role of children scarers, Blakely erroneously and ludicrously thinks that the word 'neger' is about someone from the African continent – and than from equatorial Africa, too. (He refers for the 'Blanke Negers' to the "Volkskunde-Atlas voor Nederland en Vlaams-BelgiŽ”, p. 114, 120-122.)
One example of his other mistakes is the tale 'De Zwarte Man' (The black man) from the "Fabels- en versjesboek” (the book Fables And Verses) by J.J.A Gouverneur (Johan Jacob Antonie Goeverneur, 1809-1889). Blakely here again thinks that it is about an African man who is used as Bogey-man. However, it is manifestly clear that it is not about a negroid person, but about Zwarte Piet: the devil.
Blakely appears to have projected his own cultural prejudices onto another culture - the Dutch and European culture - that he does not understand the first thing about.
Art as History
Dutch Literatures Dark Faces