Culpa in eligendo. Het scheve perspectief van een nieuwe Bernhard-biografie (discussiedossier over Bernhard. Een verborgen geschiedenis)
Keywords:Biography, court culture, political culture
Culpa in eligendo. The Skewed Perspective of a New Bernhard Biography
The new biography Bernhard. Een verborgen geschiedenis [Bernhard: A Hidden History] by Annejet van der Zijl is seen, in the context of the sensational discourse on the monarchy in the Netherlands, through a typical narrowing of the biographical perspective. In explaining Prince Bernhard, in terms of his time and social class, simply as ‘the last feudal’, Van der Zijl has become trapped in the hermeneutic circle between Zeitgeist and individuality. Not only is this a rude denial of the modernity of the German Reich, but Bernhard’s background is not to blame for his failings. It is more interesting to ask how the Dutch political elite used Bernhard’s personal falsifications as an image-building tool for the monarchy.
This review is part of the discussion forum 'Een verborgen geschiedenis' (Annejet van der Zijl).
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