Dutch Islamophobias Past and Present
This chapter examines comparable incarnations of Islamophobia expressed by adventurers and stay-at-homes from the Netherlands. It begins by focusing on early modern Dutch descriptions of Muslims and Dutch attitudes toward Islam more generally, as well as the fear of Indonesia's “bad Muslims”—the ghostly white hajjis imagined by Louis Couperus in his now classic Hidden Force—that was ultimately displaced by the more tangible claims and threats of nationalists and Communists who had reconfigured the writings of the European tradition. The chapter then considers how a heightened awareness of radical Islam had led a small segment of exclusively white officialdom to issue numerous directives in the early 1880s calling for greater vigilance against purported “foreign” Muslim threats. It concludes with a discussion of how the Dutch forged a new relationship with Islam in the postcolonial era that had little to do with their old Indies or yet their old fears.
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