Dutch Culture and the Netherlands

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  • Topic: Netherlands, Dutch East India Company, Dutch West India Company
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Seminar in multi-culturalism
Final Report: The Netherlands and Dutch Culture

Seminar in multi-culturalism

Table of content

Introduction..........3
The Dutch golden age........4
The geography of the Netherlands......5
Population in the Netherlands.......6
The Dutch colonies.........7
Amsterdam..........8

Introduction
Inspired by the topic introduced by director Wu of “Centre of Netherlands Education” we will write our report on the Netherlands and its Dutch culture. In this report various topics about this country and its culture will elaborately be discussed. As we have one Dutchman on our team, we should be able to explore the different topics to a greater depth. First of all we will discuss some of the Dutch history. For this, we have selected a more specific topic that is by far the most interesting and influential in many years of Dutch history: The Dutch Golden age. Subsequently, we will talk about the geography of the Netherlands. Also, its population, the Dutchmen, will be discussed. Furthermore, we will explore some more of the Dutch history by looking at the colonies and their, to us very interesting, presence in Taiwan. Also, the typical Dutch capital, Amsterdam, will be discussed. We will end the report with an overview of typical Dutch tourist attractions, areas that are must-visit and some of the Dutch delicacies.

The Dutch golden age
The Dutch golden age is a period in the Dutch history in which the Dutch society’s economy, trade, art, science and army rapidly enhanced to become one of the world’s best. The Dutch golden age took place around the 17th century and basically started after fighting off the Spanish occupation. With the start of the VOC, the world’s first multinational company, the Dutch builds a huge amount ships and sailed all around the globe. In many countries, especially in Asia, they did extremely profitable trade. Lots of money was going into the country and the economy flourished. Furthermore, the freedom, tolerance and open-mindedness also contributed to the Dutch success in this time. Artists and scientists were able to “express” whatever they wanted without “obstructions” of rules by government or churches. This was all influenced because the Dutch got in touch with “different thinking people” at a very early stage. These days, those believes are still clearly noticeable. Famous artists and scientists from this time include: van Gogh, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Huygens, Spinoza and van Leeuwenhoek.

The geography of the Netherlands
The Netherlands are a country located in the northwest of Europe with Belgium and Germany as neighbor countries. Its total size is 41.549 km² and is so one of Europe’s smallest countries. Approximately the half of the Netherlands landmass is located less than one meter above the sea level and around one fourth is under the sea level. Netherland’s flat regions are protected from storm surges through dikes which have in total a length of 3.000 kilometer. The highest point of whole Netherlands with 877 meters is the Mount Scenery, located on the Caribbean island “Saba”. The highest point of the mainland itself, “Vaalserberg” is in its very south on the borderline triangle of Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany which is 322, 5 meter above the sea level. Some parts of the Netherlands were created artificial through land reclamation like for example nearly the whole province “Flevoland”. Around one fifth of the landmass is covered with water; the biggest part is called “Usselmeer” a former bay which was poldered with a 29 kilometer long dike in 1932.

On the left: map of the Netherland without using dikes.
On the right: map of the Netherlands with rivers and provinces.

The most important rivers of the country are the “Rhein“, “Maas“and “Schelde“. These rivers separated the country in north and south and meet each other in the delta of “Rhein-Maas” – the biggest and most central...
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