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Talk, A Language Under My Skin

Salwa Foundation | In Other Words

A critical supplement to your Dutch language and culture courses.

Culture is leaky. As people have been moving around the world for as long as we can remember, we bring along traces and influences of other places. We borrow words from each other, and they shift and morph as they travel.

In this edition of M.A.W. we will be looking at the cross-pollination and influences between Dutch and other languages and food cultures. Through language, we can hear the traces of trade, conquest, of colonial history, of migration.  Communities that have shared land for centuries – by force or by choice.

Dutch has been deeply shaped by Yiddish, Arabic, French, German, Indonesian. And it currently is also shifting through vibrant street language and musical influences. We will trace languages through borrowed words and through food culture.

Drawing from the exhibition by Sadik Kwaish Alfraji, we will be focusing on the relationship between Arabic and Dutch – tracing words such as ‘magazijn’, ‘cijfer’ and ‘suiker’. We also will be exploring the way language can both be an instrument of power – naming and fixing people – as well as the slippage that happens when language is used against the grain.

During three Monday evenings we will gather from 17.00-19.30 in the lovely space at W139 in Amsterdam. We will hear different perspectives from working in the cultural field, have a sneak peek behind the scenes of cultural institutions and gain some critical tools to learn how to make a place for yourself in the Netherlands. We will practice Dutch vocabulary and make an alternative lexicon for the cultural field together.

This event will be hosted on the following dates: 

Monday 30 May 17.00-19.30 – with guest speaker Margarita Osipan

Monday 13 June 17.00-19.30 – with guest speaker Cengiz Mengüç

Monday 27 June 17.00-19.30 – with guest speaker Yusser Salih