Geschiedenis - Herinnering - Identiteit. De historici en het Nationaal Historisch Museum


  • N.C.F. van Sas



Identity, cultural history


History – Memory – Identity. The Historians and the National Historical Museum
Dutch professional historians have so far played a relatively minor role in the planning process of the new National Historical Museum (NMH), leaving the field largely to museologists. Though this reticence is historically understandable, it is nonetheless to be regretted. Historians should avail themselves of this opportunity to present the results of several decades of fruitful research into Dutch history in this novel setting.


The NHM project is part of an international trend among similar museums, such as the new Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin. This, however, is seen to be a rather bland compromise. For its part, the concept of Five Worlds which was proposed by the NHM directors seems to be void of any sense of time and chronology. As has been suggested here, this new presentation of Dutch history should be mainly along chronological lines, making good use of authentic objects and their undeniable magic. It should also attempt to counter the present climate of historical disorientation and indeed chronophobia.


This article is part of the forum 'The Dutch National History Museum'.


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How to Cite

Sas, N. van. (2009). Geschiedenis - Herinnering - Identiteit. De historici en het Nationaal Historisch Museum. BMGN - Low Countries Historical Review, 124(3), 419–430.