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Poster design by Özgür Atlagan
Activity theme

Discussion 'Dutch Soldier Photography During the Indonesian National Revolution (1945–50) in Context'

NIOD and the Research Center for Material Culture have invited Susie Protschky to speak about her work that aims to map out a plan for placing the many thousands of photographs taken by Dutch soldiers during their deployment to Indonesia between 1945 and 1950, within a longer historical context of military photography and colonial violence. Esther Captain will offer a response.

The subjugation campaigns of the colonial army (KNIL) in the Netherlands East Indies, at the turn of the twentieth century, produced one of the most substantial photographic records of military atrocities committed by a European colonial regime anywhere in Southeast Asia before World War Two. We do not see their like again in Indonesia until the surfeit of photographs by ordinary Dutch soldiers from across the armed forces during the Indonesian National Revolution (1945–50). 

To note: This presentation contains historic images of violence. The speakers hope to address these images critically and with sensitivity. Feedback is welcome.


The event will take place online via Zoom on September 1, 2022 from 10-11 CET. Please register for the Zoom meeting here.

About the speakers

Dr. Susie Protschky is Associate Professor in History at Deakin University (Melbourne, Australia) and an Australia Research Council Future Fellow (2021–5) for the project ‘Decolonisation and photography in Southeast Asia: Histories and legacies’. She is the author of the prize-winning book Photographic Subjects: Monarchy and Visual Culture in Colonial Indonesia (Manchester University Press, 2019). 

Dr. Esther Captain is a senior researcher and staff member at the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV) in Leiden, the Netherlands. She has been project leader and researcher at the ‘Independence, Decolonization, Violence and War in Indonesia, 1945-1950’-program of the consortium of research institutes KITLV, NIOD and NIMH.

This discussion is part of the History's Darkroom Discussion Series organized by NIOD ImageLab.

Poster design by Özgür Atlagan
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