Introduction: A tradition of anti-colonial dissenting voices?

In this introduction to the project Maartje Janse and Anne-Lot Hoek together explore the ways in which we deal with our colonial past, and discuss ways to write a history of the colonial past that includes the dissenting voices that have often been silenced or ignored. Even though it is often suggested that the mindset of people in the past prevented them from seeing what was wrong with things we now find highly problematic, they argue that there was indeed a tradition of colonial criticism in the Netherlands, one that included the voices of many ‘forgotten critics’ whose lives and criticism are the subject of this publication. The voices however were for a long time overlooked by Dutch historians.

In recent years public debate has intensified over the question whether Dutch society understands enough of the legacy of its colonial past. Publications such as Gloria Wekker’s White Innocence1, which points out the unwillingness of many Dutch people to face the reality of the colonial past and its long-term effects, has met with critical, often angry and dismissive responses. Publications by Piet Emmer2 and Kester Freriks3 that appear to be more apologetic of the colonial past have inspired many responses as well, pointing out that we can no longer romanticize or relativize the colonial past.

One of the arguments often used in debates about the colonial past, is the argument that we need to understand colonialism and the atrocities that came with it in the context of its own time.4 It suggests that the mindset of people in the past prevented them from seeing what was wrong with things we now find highly problematic.5 Was colonial rule acceptable in the past or was there a tradition of criticism and protest, not just among the colonized themselves, but from within colonizing nations as well? We argue that within the Netherlands there has always been criticism of colonial rule, often much more than might be expected. However, critics of colonial regimes have often been ignored by contemporaries and historians alike. As literary historian Marrigje Paijmans, who analyzes Early Modern criticism of slavery and colonialism in the Netherlands argues: “The seventeenth-century debate about colonialism has remained invisible because criticism was marginalized, both in the seventeenth century and now.”6 In the context of colonial crimes Professor of Criminology Willem de Haan (VU University Amsterdam) even argues on the basis of jurisdiction that for instance former Dutch prime minister Colijn, who wrote a letter to his wife about women and children that he killed or ordered to be killed as a colonial officer on Lombok in 1894, was not to be judged just as a ‘child of his time,’ but as ‘a criminal in the context any time.’7

A more thorough and systematic exploration of the centuries-long tradition of criticism of colonial rule is long overdue. This article offers a first attempt by placing the biographies of four critical voices against colonial policies in the Dutch East-Indies in the nineteenth and twentieth century in a wider context: Willem Bosch (1798-1866); Sutan Sjahrir (1909-1966); Siebe Lijftogt (1919-2005); and Rachmad Koesoemobroto (1914-1998). How were people who publicized unwelcome information about colonial abuses treated by contemporaries and historians? The biographies trace the patterns of marginalization of critics, both during colonial rule, and later by historians and society at large. Why is it, that so many critics of colonial rule have been ignored by historians for so long? To deepen our understanding of the ways in which colonial criticism challenges dominant narratives, we have included a brief analysis of post-colonial debates on the decolonization proces, especially focusing on historian Cees Fasseur’s role in shaping post-war narratives of the colonial past (see sections ‘Cees Fasseur and his critics’ and ‘The way forward’).

An example of anti-colonial protest. Cover of the former Dutch social-democratic newspaper ‘Het Volk’ (The People) in 1906, depicting ‘puputan’ (self-chosen death in preference to facing the humiliation of surrender) in Bali, Indonesia. The ritual was carried out by the Balinese in response to the Dutch occupation, while Dutch soldiers killed hundreds of Balinese at the same time. Subtitled ‘The Netherlands has once more brought civilisation’.1

By discussing both criticism during colonial rule and criticism of colonial rule after it ended, this article offers a long-term perspective of the dynamics of colonial criticism in Dutch debates. What is more, criticism of colonial rule did not limit itself to these debates but can be found in literature, music, and the visual arts as well. This article is a collaboration of people with different backgrounds – academic, journalism, music, film making – and aims at offering a broad perspective on colonial criticism, both in terms of object of study as in terms of methods and perspectives. Another ambition of this article is to show that historians’ downplaying of colonial violence, combined with their claims of academic objectivity, have had an impact on the exclusion of dissenting voices in the academic as well as the public debate.

It is important to stress that we depart from a Dutch debate, focussing on critics of Dutch colonial rule as they participated in debates in Dutch and Dutch Indies colonial contexts. When researching criticism of Dutch colonialism in the Dutch East Indies at first sight it appears that there was no long-standing Dutch tradition of anti-colonialism (as compared to criticism of slavery for instance). Does that mean that there was no tradition of criticizing colonial rule? No. We argue that there is a more vivid tradition of colonial criticism that becomes visible when you look beyond the lone heroic revolutionary figures, and pay attention to the ‘forgotten critics’ of colonial policy. Contemporaries (especially government officials and others engaged in the colonial project) needed to silence critics, or frame them as lone wolves and exceptional figures, to maintain the dominant narrative that colonialism was beyond any doubt a blessing to everyone involved.

Anti-colonial protest or criticism of the colonial system was firmly embedded within a centuries’ long tradition of physical struggle against colonial oppression by the colonized in the Dutch Indies. It was the resistance to colonial rule of for instance the people of Atchin and Bali, who fought very long and hard against colonial rule and the atrocities committed by the colonial army, that resonated in the Dutch debate. Criticism resonated in many forms, for instance satirical cartoons (see above) (after the conquest of Bali: ‘The Netherlands have once more brought civilization’), or a song by an MP about the horrors of Atchin in 1904; the critical novels and essays by Elizabeth (Beb) Vuijk8; comments in communist publications such as De Waarheid during ‘police actions’ in the colonies; Henk van Randwijk’s Vrij Nederland essay ‘Because I am a Dutch citizen’9; and the exhibition of Otto and Agus Djaya in the Stedelijk Museum in 1947 (two painters who tried to gain support for the Indonesian independence in The Netherlands).10 This article offers a series of biographies of people who spoke out against (aspects of) colonial rule. Interestingly enough these forgotten critics did not voice their criticism from outside the political and cultural establishment, but from within. They challenged the system they were part of, sometimes in a polite tone of voice, sometimes a bit more emotional, but hardly ever by violently resisting it. They were often part of the (upper) middle classes, leading bourgeois lives that were in many ways unremarkable. They were civil servants, intellectuals, journalists. These critics were less visible – and also less important perhaps in deciding the course of history. Still, they are important because the forgotten critics offer a strong reminder that there were many more individuals speaking out against colonial abuses than is often thought.

The project started with the story of Willem Bosch, whose criticism of colonial rule in the Dutch East Indies was all but forgotten for a long time.11 To place his story in a broader context, we decided to pair Bosch’ biography with the life stories of some 20th-century critics. The lives of Bosch, Shahrir, Lijftogt, Koesoemobroto – all of whom we had published about before – gained new meanings when placed alongside those of other critics of the colonial regime. By bringing together several critical voices of colonial and post-colonial rule, we want to encourage scholars to think of these critics as part of a long-term tradition of dissent, rather than as individual case studies. We want to sketch an outline of what could become a more complete (group) biography of dissenting voices.12 Our approach has been to combine a close reading of criticism with an analysis of the ways it was channeled and the audience it aimed to reach. This information is firmly embedded in its biographical context, as ideas are always embodied by people who risk paying a price for expressing them – to the point of detention and demonization, as some of our case studies show.

Having said that, we have no intention of writing hagiographies or of creating a gallery of heroic men. It is easy to admire them for the things they bravely stood up for, but stressing this has its dangers, as it could evolve into self-congratulatory reassurance about colonial history. Rather, we want to show under what political and biographical circumstances a small number of individuals spoke out for what they believed in, how they did that, why, and what response they met. At the same time we want to show how the critical voices, that did not at all fit the dominant national narratives of that time, had difficulties reaching the public, as well as historians’ ears.

It is important to stress that the case studies differ greatly in their historical contexts. At the same time, it is fair to say that our selection of case studies shows some similarities: as said, the individuals we portray here are all men, mostly well-educated, middle-class men at that, who combined relatively radical ideological positions with relatively non-confrontational modes of expressing them. They seem to share a sense of justice, moral values, and were courageous enough to speak up or act accordingly. This is not to say that there were no women whose voices impacted colonial rule. Important examples are the anti-colonial voices of the Javanese writer Raden Adjeng Kartini (1879 – 1904) and the nationalist writer Soewarsih Djojopoespito (1912-1977). They, and many other women and men, should eventually be added to the collective biography that makes it impossible to ignore the longstanding tradition of criticism of colonial rule.

Maartje Janse’s story of Willem Bosch, the first biography presented in this article, is a strong case in point. Bosch had been all but forgotten while his contemporary Multatuli’s legacy as a colonial critic lives on. Multatuli’s novel Max Havelaar is perhaps the best-known j’accuse, as this book has been taught to generations of schoolchildren as the most important -nineteenth-century novel.13 Eduard Douwes Dekker’s criticism of colonial rule is complex. For an important part, it was a personal vendetta against his former superiors who ended his career as a colonial civil servant, but he connects this to criticism of the fact that the Dutch did not protect indigenous people enough against the local indigenous elites who abused them. He even went so far as to call the Netherlands a ‘Roofstaat’, a predatory state.14

Multatuli was not the only man of letters who criticized colonial rule. We can easily find many more criticisms in the spirit of Multatuli.15 Partly because of this criticism, around 1900 an ‘ethical policy’ in colonial rule was announced, meaning more efforts to educate and civilize the colonial subjects. A sense of guilt had inspired some Dutch men and women to criticize how the colonial project was being carried out, but the project as such was rarely contested. Individuals such as Bosch, Multatuli, W.R. Van Hoëvell16 and S.F.W. Roorda van Eijsinga17 each in his own way, criticized aspects of colonial rule, or its hypocrisy, but not colonialism as such.18 Recent publications have suggested that this criticism and sense of guilt can be traced back as far as the 1840s, when an ‘ethical movement’ took off.19

During the first half of the twentieth century slowly but surely a more fundamental and more widespread criticism of colonialism developed. The gruesome killings during the Atjeh War of 1904 were, for instance, anonymously yet publicly criticized by W.A. Van Oorschot, who had witnessed the atrocities as lieutenant of the military police. Structural criticism developed within the socialist movement and the Dutch Social Democratic Workers’ Party (SDAP), even though colonialism was never a very popular topic among socialists either.20 Socialist H.H. van Kol (pseud. Rienzi) criticized colonial policies, for instance, while another socialist, Henk Sneevliet, offered a scathing critique of racism amongst the white colonial population in a courtroom in Semarang in 1917.

The most important and fundamental criticism of the colonial project, however, came from nationalist movements of the colonized themselves during the first half of the twentieth century. In 1913 Soewardi Soerjaningrat wrote the critical pamphlet: ‘If only I were a Dutch citizen’ (original title: “Als ik eens Nederlander was”), a pamphlet that still resonates in current debates about immigration in The Netherlands. And as early as 1918, in the Netherlands as well as in the East-Indies, we can find explicit calls for an Indonesian State issued by the Indies Society (Indische Vereeniging) of The Hague, active from 1913, and the forerunner of the better-known Perhimpoenan Indonesia. In 1918 the musician and nationalist Soorjo Poetro published a unequivocally nationalist Election Manifesto, (which appeared in several Dutch and Dutch-Indies newspapers). Invoking the notion of the right of peoples to self-determination, it roundly stated “Indonesia separate from Holland! Only then a voluntary alliance between the two nations becomes a possibility. (…) Vote for the party that promotes the separation between Indonesia and The Netherlands. Vote Red!”.21

In the decades that followed, Perhimpoenan Indonesia, the association of Indonesian students in the Netherlands, developed into an important anti-colonial nationalist organization. Mohammed Hatta and Soetan Sjahrir were among its members. The Indonesian nationalists were in contact with ‘West-Indian’ Anton de Kom, sometimes referred to as ‘the black messiah of the Surinamese proletariat’22 De Kom attended Perhimpoenan Indonesia meetings when he was in the Netherlands, where he discussed the joint efforts of the East and West Indies to liberate themselves from the Netherlands.23

The Perhimpunan Indonesia was an important gathering for critical thinking. The photo shows members of the board of the Perhimpunan Indonesia in 1924. Standing, from left to right, Junaedi, Mohammad Hatta, Ichsan, and Dahlan Abdullah. Sitting, from left to right, Subardjo, Soekiman Wirjosandjojo (president and physician), and Nazir Pamontjak. 2Farewell party Sukiman. 1927 Source: International Institute for Social History, Amsterdam.3

Many inhabitants of future Indonesia attempted to gain the right to self-determination through legal action, through the People’s Council of the Indies, for instance, or the petition of Soejono in 1936. They were part of a new generation of critics who spoke out in the 1930s, when the colonial regime was more repressive than ever in its struggle against the rise of nationalism and communism, and in the 1940s, when the Dutch government responded with large-scale violence to the proclamation of the Republic of Indonesia. Some of them accused the Dutch government of acting like Germany – in the 1930s because of the concentration camps, and in the 1940s as an occupying power. And they asked questions: on what legal basis do the Dutch deny the Indonesians their freedom? And after that, what right does the young Republic of Indonesia have to incarcerate many of the former freedom fighters as enemies of the state? These questions were largely ignored because they did not fit the national narratives of respectively the Netherlands and Indonesia.

Anne-Lot Hoek’s biographical sketches of Sjahrir, Lijftogt and Koesoemobroto show that asking these questions were seen as threatening, especially in a context in which the political legitimacy of an old or new regime was contested. Critics were silenced, either by locking them up or by accusing them of being conspiracy theorists or traitors to their country. Hoek shows that they posed a massive threat to the dominant narrative that had to be upheld in order to rationalize the injustices produced by the colonial regime. In combining journalistic and academic approaches, Hoek shows how most of these people were ‘personally involved in this drama’, just as Willem Bosch was. To stand up for your convictions could have grave consequences, but at the same time could inspire countless others – Sutan Sjahrir’s name, for instance, comes back in many stories as a source of inspiration – he was not forgotten by all.

Hoek also explores Dutch historians’ relation to colonial criticism in the chapter on Cees Fasseur, showing how traditional Dutch historians’ claims of being neutral and objective were used to avoid critical reflection on the responsibility of historians to do justice to the complexity of the past. Where historians have paid attention to colonial critics, they have mostly painted them as lone exceptions – Multatuli is a good example of a critic whose unique qualities as artist and freedom fighter have been continuously stressed, having practically no attention to the much less audible voices that were there.

The perspectives on the period of 1945-1949 in the Netherlands and Indonesia differ greatly. For Indonesia the date of independence is 17th of August 1945 (two days after the Japanese surrender, when Sukarno proclaimed independence), whereas the Netherlands only recognized Indonesian independence with the transfer of sovereignty that took place in December 1949. The Dutch referred to Indonesian freedom fighters as ‘terrorists’ – to indicate the illegitimacy of the fight for independence – for a long time, and hung on to the word ‘police actions’, whereas the Indonesians call this the ‘Agresi Militer Belanda.’ These voices were overlooked.

Historians often kept presenting one-sided Dutch narratives and refrained from fundamentally questioning what happened during the years 1945-1949. Dissenting voices did not seem to fit the dominant narrative in which colonial violence was downplayed, and the experience of Indonesians – however widely researched by (international) anthropologists and Indonesian specialists – was overlooked by the traditional Dutch historians. The academic attitude of the previous generation of historians was intricately linked to the public debate on this highly contested issue.

It is understandable that it takes time before a society dares to look critically at a painful episode in its history. The downfall and the trauma of Fascism and Nazism on the European continent caused the post-war Netherlands to focus on the future of a new Europe. The legacy of a long period of state-based colonial violence in Indonesia, however, did not match the dominant narrative that framed the Netherlands as the victim that had stood on the right side of history and collectively said ‘never again’. Literary scholar Paul Bijl wrote in his dissertation Emerging memory24 that information about colonial violence has always been available, but that people in general did not want to hear about it. Information about it was plentiful, and images were widely available in the public domain. Sociologist Abraham de Swaan concluded the same in in De Groene Amsterdammer.25 It was a national secret that was uncovered and hidden over and over again. ‘At the heart of this nation, two powers fight each other constantly: oblivion and remembrance.’ For politicians, veterans and post-colonial groups, the topic of the Dutch Indies long remained highly sensitive. The broader Dutch audience showed a lack of interest.



Images about colonial violence have always been available, but they were widely contested. This image shows the frontpage of the newspaper The Volkskrant on 10 July 2012, with photos of executions during the Indonesian independence war. Paul Bijl states in Emerging Memories: “Dutch colonial violence is not absent from the public sphere in the Netherlands, and never has been. The nevertheless often expressed concern that it is forgotten stems from the fact that dominant frames of remembrance do not produce colonial violence as memorable in a national framework and make the dead and abused of the Dutch East Indies difficult to fit in a larger narrative.”

It is important to note that there was a long tradition of governmental attempts of keeping state-based violence in Indonesia out of the public debate. Out of fear of colonial revolts the Dutch government had always tried to suppress evidence of wrong-doing in the colonies. The notorious Rhemrev report of 1904, an official account of severe maltreatment of workers in Deli, Sumatra, was published only in 1987 by sociologist Jan Breman.26 If authorities were aware of grave human-rights violations, they tried to keep them out of the public debate. The concentration camp Boven-Digoel was also not commonly discussed in the Dutch debate.27The Dutch government did not take responsibility for the extreme violence that was used in 1945-1949 to violently oppress the struggle for Indonesian independence, and even covered evidence of this up several times.

During the war, the government chose to use misleading terms such as ‘politionele acties’ and ‘excessen.’ The thousands of conscientious objectors to military service in the Dutch East-Indies and the many whistle-blowers received harsh treatments. In 1954, the government refused to prosecute those responsible for the mass murder in South Celebes (violence in 1946-1947 preceding the police actions). The government went far to silence critics. Willem Oltmans was the first Dutch journalist to interview Sukarno in 195628 against the wishes of the government, and also published pleas for transferring Dutch New Guinea to Indonesia. The government successfully conspired to keep him out of work. The Dutch state was ordered to pay Oltmans damages for this in 2000.

War veteran Joop Hueting – the most important Dutch post-war whistleblower – criticized the structural violence during the war in Indonesia in 1945-1949 (euphemistically labelled ‘police actions’.) on national television in 1969. The government reacted with an inquiry into the ‘excesses’ or violent incidents that happened during the Indonesian war for independence. A quick assessment of the violent crimes resulted in the ‘Excessennota’, a short note of reported ‘derailments’ written by the young historian and ambitious civil servant Cees Fasseur, whose role in the historical debates on the colonial past will be explored further in the section Kousbrouk and Fasseur. This ‘Excessennota’ was important, because it introduced a narrative that would remain dominant for decades to come.29

Granted, counter-narratives were present in the Dutch debate, but were either suppressed, contested or received little attention. For instance: in 1970 the ‘Excessennota’ was challenged by the book Ontsporing van Geweld, written by two sociologists Van Doorn and Hendrix, who concluded that there had been a pattern of (extreme) structural violence. As academics, but relative outsiders to the history establishment, they were able to say what one year before their publication had caused so much upheaval.30 This very important academic counter-publication received limited press attention. This resulted in a peculiar situation: that we knew, but did not want to know. So when Loe de Jong was critical of the war in Indonesia in the 1980s in part 11A of his magnum opus Het Koninkrijk der Nederlanden in de Tweede Wereldoorlog,31 and later on used the word ‘war crimes’ in his conclusions, it once more caused a huge public outcry, especially amongst war veterans. In 1987 De Jong was forced to withdraw ‘war crimes’ from his conclusions under public pressure.32 In the 1990s important critics such as Tjalie Robinson, Rudi Kousbrouk and Ewald Vanvught challenged the dominant narratives in post-war Netherlands. But it took until 2011, when activist Jeffry Pondaag and lawyer Liesbeth Zegveld successfully challenged the Dutch colonial narrative through a related court case, in combination with the publication of Alfred Birney’s bestselling novel De Tolk van Java (2015), and the dissertation of historian Rémy Limpach (2016) to firmly underline the statements that Hueting had already made in the Dutch debate in 1969.

Structural violence was therefore downplayed for decades and has only recently been given more serious attention by scholars and publicists. One could even argue that the strong reactions and attempts to silence critics indicate a high awareness of the highly contested nature of the colonial project, perhaps even some sort of guilty conscience, by war veterans and the Dutch government alike.

If this brief and by no means complete overview of criticism shows one thing, it is that both during and after colonial rule there was ample criticism and debate in the Netherlands. Criticism was however ignored, downplayed or forgotten. Some of the criticism was hard to miss, some of it was less radical in the ways it was communicated. The biographies of Bosch, Shahrir, Lijftogt and Koesoemobroto show that a critical attitude to colonial rule was to be found in even broader segments of Dutch society than perhaps thought before.

Maartje and Anne-Lot were guests on the historical radioshow OVT in July 2018, where they discussed the publication, and argued for more emphasis on dissenting voices in historical analysis of colonialism [in Dutch, English subtitles added]. A quote from Maartje Janse during the interview after being asked by the presenter how it could be possible that historians have not looked into these dissenting voices for a long time. (9.32 – 10.32) “I think for a very long time, at least from the 1970s, we have been hearing stories about freedom fighters who were pretty radical. Multatuli. Figures who refused to conform. Who stood outside the establishment. The figures that we have collected and whose biographical sketches we offer are those that operated much more from within the establishment. Civil servants. That was not really an attractive theme to write about in the seventies. So these are actually moderate people, who may spread radical ideas, but do so in a moderate way. They do not use violence for example. And what you see, in that middle group, proves to me that criticism was possible in broad layers of the population, including among moderate bourgeois figures. It was not just the Communists or the radical artists, whose image has dominated the story for a long time. We now can see the middle groups. And whether there was criticism in civil society.”33


  1. Gloria Wekker, White Innocence. Paradoxes of Colonialism and Race. (London: Duke University Press, 2016).
  2. Piet Emmer, Het zwart-witdenken voorbij. Een bijdrage aan de discussie over kolonialisme, slavernij en migratie [Beyond black-and-white thinking. A contribution to the discussion about colonialism, slavery and migration] (Amsterdam: Nieuw Amsterdam, 2017). Marco Visscher, “Historicus Piet Emmer: ‘Zij die over ons slavernijverleden het hoogste woord voeren, weten sterk te overdrijven’,” [Historian Piet Emmer: “Those who have the highest word over our slavery past know how to exaggerate strongly”] De Volkskrant, January 6, 2018.
  3. Kester Freriks, “Tempo doeloe – ook een mooie tijd,” [Tempo doeloe – also a good time] NRC Handelsblad, October 5, 2018.
  4. Zihni Özdil, “De drogredeneringen van Piet Emmer,” [The fallacies of Piet Emmer] Historiek, August 3, 2014.
  5. Marco Visscher, “Piet Emmer: ‘zij die over ons slavernijverleden het hoogste woord voeren weten sterk te overdrijven’,” [Piet Emmer: “those who have the highest word over our slavery history know how to exaggerate strongly] De Volkskrant, January 6, 2018;  Piet Emmer, “De slavernij van het Mauritshuis,”[The slavery of the Mauritshuis] Historiek, July 31, 2014. A reply by Emmer on the historical platform Historiek to the blogpost: Zihni Özdil, “Slavernij-achtergrond Mauritshuis is zorgvuldig gewist. De gepasteuriseerde geschiedenis van het Mauritshuis,” [Slavery background of the Mauritshuis has been carefully erased. The pasteurized history of the Mauritshuis] Historiek, July 2, 2014. Willem de Haan, “Knowing What We Know Now: International Crimes in Historical Perspective,” Journal of International Criminal Justice, 13, no.4 (2015): 783-799, [restricted access]; Remco Meijer, Oostindisch doof. het Nederlandse debat over de dekolonisatie van Indonesië [Oostindisch deaf. the Dutch debate about the decolonization of Indonesia] (Amsterdam: Prometheus, 1995).
  6. Marrigje Paijmans, “Ook in de zeventiende eeuw werd het debat over kolonialisme gesmoord,” [Also in the seventeenth century the debate about colonialism was smothered] Over de muur, May 4, 2018.
  7. De Haan, “Knowing,” 3-6.
  8. For more information see the English overview of literature in the Beb Vuyk entry on Wikipedia and a biography in Dutch by Kees Kuiken, Vuijk, Elizabeth, Digitaal Vrouwenlexicon van Nederland, October 11, 2017.
  9. Henk van Randwijk, ‘Omdat ik Nederlander ben,’ [Because I am a Dutch citizen], Vrij Nederland, July 26,1947. Republished in in 1999 by the NRC Handelsblad.
  10. See also The Djaya brothers. Revolusi in The Stedelijk. Exhibition 9 June – 2 September 2018. Website Stedelijk Museum.
  11. Until Maartje Janse started to publish about him. See Maartje Janse, “‘Waarheid voor Nederland, regtvaardigheid voor Java’. De geschiedenis van de Maatschappij tot Nut van den Javaan,” [‘Truth for the Netherlands, lawfulness for Java’. The history of the Society for the Benefit of the Javanese] Utrechts Historische Cahiers 20 (1999) nr. 3-4.
  12. For more (post)colonial life writing see Rosemarijn Hoefte, Peter Meel and Hans Renders, Tropenlevens: de (post)koloniale biografie [Tropical lives: the (post) colonial biography](Leiden/Amsterdam: KITLV/Boom, 2008).
  13. Multatuli (pseudonym of Eduard Douwes Dekker), Max Havelaar of de koffij-veilingen der Nederlandsche Handel-Maatschappy [Max Havelaar or the Coffee Auctions of the Dutch Trading Company] (Amsterdam, J. de Ruyter, 1860).
  14. See for instance Nop Maes, Multatuli voor iedereen (maar niemand voor Multatuli) [Multatuli for everyone (but nobody for Multatuli)] (Nijmegen: Vantilt, 2000).
  15. See for instance all essays in Theo D’haen and Gerard Termorshuizen (eds), De geest van Multatuli. Proteststemmen in vroegere Europese koloniën [The spirit of Multatuli. Protest voices in former European colonies] (Leiden: 1998); Remieg Aerts, Theodor Duquesnoy, and Jan Breman (eds), Een ereschuld. Essays uit De Gids over ons koloniaal verleden [A debt of honor. Essays from De Gids about our colonial past] (Amsterdam: Meulenhoff, 1993).
  16. Such as W.R. van Hoëvell, Slaven en vrijen onder de Nederlandsche wet [Slaves and free persons under the Dutch law] (Zaltbommel: Joh. Noman en Zoon, 1854). Second print (1855) available at the website of De Digitale Bibliotheek voor de Nederlandse Letteren (DBNL). 
  17. For instance the poem De Vloekzang van Sentot of De laatste dag der Hollanders op Java [The Curse Song of Sentot or The Last Day of the Dutch on Java]. In: Multatuli, Max Havelaar, (1875).
  18. Janny de Jong, Van batig slot naar ereschuld. De discussie over de financiele verhouding tussen Nederland en Indie en de hervorming van de Nederlandse koloniale politiek 1860-1900 [From merciful lock to honorary debt. The discussion about the financial relationship between the Netherlands and the East Indies and the reform of the Dutch colonial policy 1860-1900] (’s Gravenhage: SDU 1989); also see Ewald Vanvugt, Nestbevuilers. 400 jaar Nederlandse critici van het koloniale bewind in de Oost en de West [Nest polluters. 400 years of Dutch critics of the colonial rule in the East and the West] (Amsterdam: Babylon-De Geus 1996).
  19. Maartje Janse, “Representing Distant Victims: The Emergence of an Ethical Movement in Dutch Colonial Politics, 1840-1880,” BMGN-Low Countries Historical Review 128-1 (2013): 53-80; Harry A. Poeze, In het land van de overheerser: Indonesiërs in Nederland 1600-1950 [In the land of the ruler: Indonesians in the Netherlands 1600-1950] (Dordrecht: Foris Publications, 1986).
  20. F. Tichelman, “De sociaal-democratie en het koloniale vraagstuk (De SDAP en Indonesië 1894-1914),” [Social democracy and the colonial issue (SDAP and Indonesia 1894-1914)] in: M. Campfens e.a. (eds), Op een beteren weg. Schetsen uit de geschiedenis van de arbeidersbeweging aangeboden aan mevrouw dr. J.M. Welcke [On a better road. Sketches from the history of the labor movement presented to Mrs. Dr. J.M. Welcke] (Amsterdam, 1985), 158-171; F. Tichelman, “Socialist Internationalism and the Colonial World,” in: Frits van Holthoon and Marcel van der Linden, Internationalism in the Labour Movement, 1830-1940 (Leiden: Brill, 1988), 87-108; Erik Hansen, ‘Marxists and Imperialism: The Indonesian Policy of the Dutch Social Democratic Workers Party, 1894-1914’, Indonesia 16 (1973): 81-104; J.A.A. van Doorn “De sociaal- democratie en het koloniale vraagstuk,” [Social democracy and the colonial issue] Socialisme en Democratie 11 (1999): 483-492.
  21. Soorjo Poetro, “Een Indiers uitspraak,” [An Indo verdict] Het Volk: dagblad voor de arbeiderspartij, July 2, 1918. For the Indische Vereeniging also see Klaas Stutje, “Indonesian identities abroad International Engagement of Colonial Students in the Netherlands, 1908-1931,” BMGN, Volume 128-1 (2013): 153.
  22. A portrait of Anton de Kom is included in the series Echte Helden by Herman Morssink, see section Siebe Lijftogt.
  23. Martijn Blekendaal, “Anton de Kom (1898-1945) en Mohammad Hatta (1902-1980),” Historisch Nieuwsblad 5 (2010).
  24. Paul Bijl, Emerging Memory: Photographs of Colonial Atrocity in Dutch Cultural Remembrance (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2016).
  25. Abraham De Swaan, “Postkoloniale absences,” [Postcolonial absences] De Groene Amsterdammer, May 10, 2017.
  26. Jan Breman, Koelies, planters en koloniale politiek [Coolies, planters and colonial politics] (Floris, 1987) Jan Breman, Taming the Coolie Beast: Plantation Society and the Colonial Order in Southeast Asia (Dehli: Oxford University Press, 1989).
  27. Boven-Digoel is discussed in the section Sutan Sjahrir.
  28. Willem Oltmans, Mijn vriend sukarno [My friend Sukarno] (Utrecht: Het Spectrum, 1995).
  29. The interview with Hueting and the excessennota are discussed in the section Fasseur and his critics.
  30. J.A.A. van Doorn and W.J. Hendrix, Ontsporing van geweld: over het Nederland/Indisch/Indonesisch conflict [Derailments of violence: about the Netherlands/Indo/Indonesian conflict] (Rotterdam: Universitaire pers, 1970).
  31. Lou de Jong, Koninkrijk der Nederlanden in de Tweede Wereldoorlog 1939-1945 deel 11A [Kingdom of the Netherlands in the Second World War 1939-1945 part 11A] (Amsterdam: Rijksinstituut voor oorlogsdocumentatie, 1984).
  32. Stef Scagliola, Last van de Oorlog, de Nederlandse oorlogsmisdaden in Indonesië en hun verwerking [Burden of the War, Dutch war crimes in Indonesia and their processing] (Rotterdam: Balans,  2002), 92.
  33. OVT Radio, “Vergeten Antikoloniale stemmen,” [Forgotten Anticolonial voices], VPRO, July 1 , 2018. Original published at OVT radio NPO1. Published with English subtitles for this publication at the Youtube channel of Voice4Thought.