This book reveals the fundamental role rape played in promoting Dutch solidarity from 1609-1725. Through the identification of particular enemies, it directed attention away from competing regional, religious, and political loyalties. Patriotic Protestant authors highlighted atrocities committed by the Spanish and lower-class criminals. They conversely cast Dutch men as protectors of their wives and daughters – an appealing characterization that allowed the Dutch to take pride in a sense of moral superiority and justify the Dutch Revolt. After the conclusion of peace with Spain in 1648, marginalized authors, including Catholic priests and literary women, employed depictions of rape to subtly advance their own agendas without undermining political stability. Rape was thus essential in the development and preservation of a common identity that paved the way for the Dutch defeat of the mighty Spanish empire and their rise to economic pre-eminence in Europe.
Amanda Pipkin, Ph.D. (2007) in History, Rutgers University, is Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She has published articles on seventeenth-century Dutch culture in the Journal of Early Modern History and in Tijdschrijft voor Geschiedenis.
[...] [a] thorough and precise analyses of the depiction of rape in the Dutch early modern literature. Pipkin’s examinations are very helpful to any Dutch scholar working on early modern ideologies and representations of rape.
Manon van der Heijden,
Journal of the History of Sexuality, 25:1 January 2016
List of Plates
2. Patriotic Propaganda
3. Protestant Morality
4. Catholic Advice
5. Women’s Objections
All those interested in early modern state and identity formation, the Dutch Republic, post-Reformation religious tensions, Dutch Pietism, Golden Age theatre, seventeenth-century women’s history, and the history of gender and sexuality.