Research Projects (archive)

Conquest, Competition and Ideology

The breakingaway of the United Provinces from the Spanish Empire implied the end of the holy trinity of Common Good, Monarchy and Divine Providence. It opened the path towards new practices and new ways of thinking about the nature and purposes of government and private public relations. The realist, even sceptical raison d'état that inspired the monarchies of Europe was gradually replaced by a bourgeois reason of state that considered trade not only the sinews of war, but its proper replacement. All three elements of the holy trinity became essentially contested and thereby changed the practice of governance as well as its ideology. This programme aims at considering exemplary episodes in this process in order to rewrite the general story of this development, in order to contribute to our understanding of the dynamics of this highly innovative period in the history of Western governance. The programme aims at demonstrating that the Dutch Republic is justifiably the first case in European history of a system of governance (nonhierarchical, conscious application of privatepublic partnership). Moreover, it will enumerate and analyze the difficulties and prospects involved in its introduction.

Period: 2005-2009

Research leaders: Professor Dr. Robert v. Friedeburg and dr. Hans Blom (FSW)


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Controlling Time and Shaping the Self

The key question of the project is to what extent and in what ways the specific contents and forms of egodocuments as well as the increase in their number in the long nineteenth century were related to the emergence of a new sense of temporality, both on an individual level, through the medium of pedagogical intervention, and in the public sphere. The traditional wisdom concerning the links between autobiographical writing, growing introspection and individualization will be questioned. In my view, while writing to control temporal experience, the nineteenth-century autobiographers inadvertently reflected on themselves and shaped their own individuality.

Period: 2002-2008

Research leader: Dr. J.A. (Arianne) Baggerman

Team: Dr. R. Dekker, Drs. E. Grabowsky, Drs. M. Huisman, Drs. M. de Jong-Ijsselstein, Drs. J. Kuyvenhoven-Broek, Drs. G. Schulte Nordholt, Drs. J. Blaak


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Private Wealth and Public Office

The modern predicament of (inter)national politics invites a co-ordinated investigation of the structures of political development in early-modern Europe and America (16th-18th centuries), with special attention to church-state relations, the economy (relations between economic and political elites, jealousy of trade, early capitalism for short) and the relations of citizens and their government. The changing religious experience and organisation, the increasing international competition within and outside Europe, in combination with increasing demands on political organisation of the world before the French Revolution have obtained a new relevance by recent events. Co-operation of early-modern scholars from different disciplines is called for, as is co-operation across the 'Atlantic divide'.

 Period: 2005-2010

Researchers: Professor Dr. Robert v. Friedeburg and Hans Blom (FSW)


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Paradoxes of De-Canonization

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Rotterdam - Antwerp 1880-2000

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