Recent years have seen a new wave in the antiracism movement, in which Zwarte Piet is seen as a product of the "actively forgotten" colonial and slavery past, but is also a symbol of underlying institutional racism, discrimination, and inequality in contemporary society. Activism against Zwarte Piet has touched a sensitive spot for the nation and unloosed intense public discussion. Through demonstrations, sharply-divided public opinion, public debates, petitions, litigation, and more, it seems the tradition is slowly changing.

While in the capital the choice has been made to say goodbye to the racist caricature, it is still evident in Rotterdam. In November 2016, 200 civilians were arrested whilst peacefully protesting against the tradition. Amnesty International called the mayors’ ban on demonstrations that day a violation. How has it come about that there is a greater intensity of activism against Zwarte Piet and racism in Amsterdam, compared to Rotterdam? How can cooperation between activists and communities in different cities be promoted, and how can activists, politicians, lawyers, artists and people from other disciplines in Rotterdam organize against Zwarte Piet?


18:30 – Doors open: possibility to visit the exhibition
19:00 – Welcome: Forgotten Histories about the fight against Black Pete from the Black Archives
19.15 – Nourdin el Ouali (NIDA)
19.25 – Gerbrig Klos (Amnesty International)
19.35 – Caitlin Schaap and Elvin Rigters (activists against Black Pete and inequality in Rotterdam)
19.45 – Break
20.00 – Spoken word Ka’at Santos
20.10 – Dialogue between Nourdin el Ouali, Gerbrig Klos, Caitlin Schaap, and Elvin Ritgers, moderated by Malique Mohamud
21.00 - End of program

This event is part of The Black Archives on Tour: Hidden Stories of Black Resistance in the Netherlands (17th – 25th June), and Cinema Olanda: Platform program.


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