Re:spect: The forgotten contributions of people of colour during World War II

There is a reason, I quite often think, why World War II is considered a boring subject, a masculine subject, a done-to-death subject.

Part of this is to do with the fact that for many Western countries, how we behaved in World War II has become an enormous part of our cultural narratives: the stories and myths we tell ourselves, and the rest of the world, represent who we really are as a nation. For countries like the UK and the US, this is often a ‘hero-myth’: they are the ones who liberated European nations from fascism. For countries like the Netherlands and Belgium, this is a ‘victim-myth’: we are the poor little countries who were the victims of the Nazi terror.

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Re:view: what ‘Design in the Third Reich’ teaches us about design and ideology

This week I visited the Design of the Third Reich exhibition which is currently on at the Design Museum in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. It has been enormously popular, with time slots selling out completely even on weekdays. Though in the run-up to the exhibition there was much … Continue reading Re:view: what ‘Design in the Third Reich’ teaches us about design and ideology

The art of war: 3 Evelyn Dunbar

In “The Art of War”, I put a work of art that has to do with the Second World War in the spotlight. The works I select may be propaganda pieces, antiwar works, or deal more objectively with the war and its aftermath. This week, Evelyn Dunbar’s The Queue at the Fish Shop (1944).

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The art of war: 2 Franciszka Themerson

In “The Art of War”, I put a work of art that has to do with the Second World War in the spotlight. The works I select may be propaganda pieces, antiwar works, or deal more objectively with the war and its aftermath. This week, Polish avant-garde artist Franciszka Themerson’s Soldiers Marching on a Beach and Struggling Figures in a Landscape (both 1946), which I saw at Tate Modern recently.

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Re:visit: Godwin’s law, the Internet meme promoting Holocaust remembrance

For the past few days, the news here in the Netherlands has been dominated by the publication of the Dutch edition of the Nashville statement. This document, which was originally drawn up by radical Christian organisations in the US in 2017, protests against gay marriage, … Continue reading Re:visit: Godwin’s law, the Internet meme promoting Holocaust remembrance