IISH and The World

The IISH, like many other scientific institutes, has been closed down by current government measures as a result of the coronavirus. This closure in no way means that its staff like researchers and collection curators – stand idly by. This current crisis encourages reflection on themes in which the IISH as an institute is closely engaged, such as social inequality and labour relations both locally and globally, the role of civil society, but also changes in world views before and after the corona crisis.

IISH & The World

IISH and The World


The IISH and the Pandemic by Aad Blok

The Covid pandemic and its consequences for public and private life have been talked and written about endlessly in the past year, from a great many different perspectives and views.

PKI in Padangpandjang

The PKI archives and the need for more inclusive descriptions by Rika Theo

But it seems you do not realize, Meneer Pangemanann, that your report is not for the general public. Only a very few people in the Indies and in the world have read and studied it … You will never know, and indeed do not need to know, who else has read it.
Pramoedya Ananta Toer, House of Glass (New York, 1992), p. 24.

Poortugaal, 1959

Black Lives Matter in global history by Leo Lucassen

The Black Lives Matter protests in the United States resonate strongly throughout the world. Not only in Europe, but also in Seoul, Monrovia, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro, and even in war-torn Idlib in Syria, where a mural honouring George Floyd has been painted. But the protests have also  generated opposition. Critics of the protests often point at other forms of racism, for example in Asia and Africa, asking ‘what about racism in other parts of the world?’ Although in itself a legitimate question, it is used as a rhetorical strategy to trivialize widespread institutional racism against people of colour, especially pertaining to descendants of enslaved Africans in the Atlantic world.

1918 flu pandemic

Spanish flu: How the world changed in the aftermath of the 1918-1919 pandemic by Touraj Atabaki

“One fateful night in the summer of 1918, with the Great War about to end, in the heart of the darkness three menacing horsemen each in possession of a whip and sword silently breached the walls and entered the town. One was called Famine, another Spanish Influenza and the other Cholera. The poor, the old and the young fell like autumn leaves ravaged by the assaults of these ruthless horsemen.”

Illustratie: Groep arbeiders op collectief stukloon in de baksteenindustrie, Noord-Duitsland, 1903. [Bron: Landesarchiv NRW Abt. OWL, Detmold (Germany), D 75 Nr. 2670.]

'Pandemie legt arbeidsverhoudingen bloot', door Gijs Kessler

De coronacrisis legt meedogenloos het onderscheid bloot tussen zelfstandigen en mensen die werken in dienstverband. De sluiting van de horeca, het verbod op het uitoefenen van contactberoepen en het afgelasten van alle grote evenementen raken ondernemers en zelfstandigen rechtstreeks in hun portemonnee, terwijl de meeste mensen met een dienstverband hun salaris voorlopig gewoon doorbetaald krijgen, of er nu werk is of niet.