Our Top Society Stories of the Year
Join us in bidding goodbye to 2023 with some of the most surprising stories we have published this year on societal matters in Flanders and the Netherlands. They are worth reading again. Sit down by the fireplace. Relax with a glass of wine and enjoy the stories.
The Dutch Art of Uitwaaien
© Eneco NK Tegenwindfietsen
The Dutch are famous for their culture of cycling. They do it everywhere, always and in any weather. Even when they have to battle against gale-force winds. Uitwaaien might be a lifestyle trend.
No War Rhetoric in National Military Museum
© Anne Reitsma / NMM
The National Military Museum of the Netherlands is not the museum equivalent of Top Gun: a promo talk disguised as entertainment to entice new recruits. Here a balanced cultural-historical story is told, with room for nuance and self-reflection. But there is also an impressive number of weapons to see.
Why Arts Education in Flanders Is Gaining Momentum
More and more Flemish students are opting to pursue art schooling during their secondary education. After a thorough reform and a few difficult Covid years, part-time art education is also winning favour again. Teachers and students see that their schools are keeping up with the times. ‘Parents are seeing art education as a good choice.’
© Stijn Felix
The call for fundamental rights for nature, especially animals, is getting louder and louder. Where does this call come from and what happens when we give animals a higher status? We explore these and many other questions in the series All Animal.
In the Shadow of Holland’s Prosperity
© Unsplash / Nick Fewings
In the streets of Amsterdam or Rotterdam, one will see far fewer homeless people than in the streets of Paris or Brussels. However, Dutch cities also struggle with increasing poverty. For the first time in history, the country has even appointed a Minister for Poverty Policy. Behind the image of the well-organized Netherlands, a distressing reality is hidden, writer Jonah Falke discovered.
Peeling the Onion in Aalst
You may know the beautiful art cities Bruges, Antwerp, Ghent and Brussels. But Flanders also has many other places that are well worth a visit. British journalist Derek Blyth crossed through the provinces and experienced the communities, traditions and sights of smaller towns. On a visit to Aalst, he discovered a Carnival parade that likes to shock, a priest that took on the factory bosses and a utopian library.