December 9, 2015

Rijksmuseum to remove slurs from art descriptions

Filed under: Art,History by Orangemaster @ 12:59 pm

The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has kicked off a project to remove hurtful ethnic designations in the descriptions of hundreds of thousands of objects and replace them with neutral terms. Why now? Because with the digitisation of the collection, more and more people aren’t too fond of the Rijksmuseum’s “traditional Eurocentric view” of the world, as the museum calls it. The Rijksmuseum also says that their staff is very positive about the changes, which has not led to any discussions, contrary to what often plays out in the Dutch media.

A Dutch word like ‘neger’, which ranges in meaning depending on context (‘negro’, ‘nigger’, ‘black man’, etc.), can be seen in thousands of artwork descriptions as ‘bosneger’, which isn’t too far from ‘jungle bunny’, but literally means ‘jungle/forest negro’. For example, a ‘black negro girl’ (why the tautology?) on a early 20th century photograph by Hendrik Doyer is now called ‘Surinamese girl’. The goal is to remove the emphasis on colour as the defining factor and it sounds good so far. Next to disappear will be all the slurs for tribes from around the world.

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February 23, 2008

Rotterdam ethnic radio makes a comeback

Filed under: General by Orangemaster @ 12:05 pm

Ethnic minorities living in Rotterdam will soon be able to tune back in to their favourite local radio shows if the five local ethnic minorities radio stations get it right this time. After having been pulled off the air due to a lack of funds, the stations will be receiving additional grants from the SLOR (Stichting Lokale Omroep Rotterdam), coordinator of the local stations in Rotterdam.

The SLOR is prepared to give a one-off grant to the five local radio stations, which went off the air from cable last summer due to financial difficulties. The grant comes from leftovers of an amount that was reserved for beginner TV programme producers. Nos Raïs (Antillian), Atlantico (Cape Verdean) and Arabica FM (Moroccan) can now pay off their debts. Voz de Cabo Verde (Cape Verdean) and Ebony (Surinamese) will still need to find extra cash.

Why bother when there is enough Dutch radio to go around? According to Brahim Bourzik of Rotterdamse Allochtone Media (Rotterdam Ethnic Minority Media), communication in their own language is important, especially since the city of Rotterdam estimates that 60,000 Rotterdam residents cannot be reached by traditional media. Bourzik estimates that together Rotterdam’s ethnic minority stations reach some 20,000 to 30,000 people a day.


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