Universiteitsbibliotheek Leiden, Vossiuszaal (Zuidhal, 2e verdieping)

Witte Singel 27, Leiden


Leiden University Libraries, Universiteit Leiden, Maatschappij der Nederlandse Letterkunde

12 May - Talks on ‘Asia and the Netherlands’

On Friday 12 May, the Language and Literature Committee of the Society of Dutch Literature is organising an afternoon meeting on the topic of ‘Asia and the Netherlands’. Europe has been fascinated by Asia for many centuries. From the 16th century, attempts have been made to bring parts of the region under Western influence and to exploit it, with varying degrees of success. Now, it appears that Asia has not only a rich past, but also a promising future.


Since the Second World War and decolonisation, countries in this part of the world have undergone rapid development. China, as an example, is currently investing on a large scale in Western companies and infrastructure, and more and more students from Asia are pursuing an academic training in Europe.


Given the context of the Leiden Asia Year, Asia and the Netherlands seems an appropriate topic for this year’s meeting. Topics in the field of linguistics and literature – both current and historical – will be discussed in a series of five lectures. Within the Society, the Indonesian-Dutch Literature working group has been occupied for many years with the Dutch colonial and post-colonial past in Southeast Asia. Besides Indonesia, other countries such as China and Japan will also be discussed during this themed meeting.


Everyone is welcome to attend. Please register before 1 May to confirm your attendance via: (mentioning MNL themed meeting 12 May)

Programme          (click here to view the programme in Dutch)

Doors open

13:30-13:40 – André Bouwman

13.40-14.10 – Tom Hoogervorst
Four centuries of Dutch Malay-language contact

14:15-14:45 – Peter van Zonneveld
Indo travelogues, 1800-1945

14:50-15:20 – Harm Beukers
Cross Written words. How and why the Japanese learned Dutch


15.55-16.25 – Mark Leenhouts
States of confusion. Chinese literature in Dutch

16:30-17:00 – Sofie Sun
Tradition or innovation? Dutch literature in Chinese



Please consider that the program of this event is in Dutch.