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Peter Hess, Chair 2505 University Avenue, Burdine Hall 336, Mailcode C3300, Austin TX 78712-1802 • 512-471-4123

Spring 2010

GRC 327E • Dutch Culture: Too Tolerant?

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
38299 TTh
2:00 PM-3:30 PM
WEL 3.266

Course Description

The Dutch are commonly known for their "tolerant," laid back attitude towards immigration, drug use, prostitution, euthanasia, and homosexuality, among others. This course explores both the stereotypes and the actuality of Dutch policies (are the Dutch really this tolerant? What do the citizens themselves think of their government's liberal policies?), and examines the background to these policies within the context of Dutch cultural history. An exploration of these issues in the Dutch context allows one to reconsider what makes our own culture(s) “tick” and offers a revealing look at cultural differences and their genesis in different contexts. At the same time, we will be asking ourselves how many of these cultural differences will remain in an increasingly global culture in which Western Europe is strongly tied to an American economy and world view. Note: this course can be taken either as a CES course with no knowledge of Dutch required, or as a Dutch 375 course, in which case some of the reading and writing assignments will be in Dutch, and we meet for Dutch discussion hours (optional).

Grading Policy

20% Discussion and participation in class 10% Class presentation of assigned text in class (once during semester) 20% Five short 1-page response papers in either English or Dutch (questions will be provided) 40% One 5-page final paper written in English (or 2 shorter papers of 2-3 pages in Dutch) 10% Final presentation to class on paper topic


William Z. Shetter: The Netherlands in Perspective. Available from the Co-op. Reader with articles in Dutch and English, available from Speedway Copies (Dobie Mall).


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