Om Amsterdam te verbeel(d): 'n verkenning van die stadsruimte in 30 Nagte in Amsterdam van Etienne van Heerden

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 11
  • Abstract:

    This article investigates the topos of geographical displacement from South-Africa to a foreign country in Etienne van Heerden’s novel 30 Nagte in Amsterdam (30 Nights in Amsterdam). The novel tells of the protagonist’s travel to and accommodation in Amsterdam while attempting to take possession of an inheritance left by an aunt that he has not seen for a long time. He experiences Amsterdam as (temporary) migrant from a postcolonial subject position, and is confronted by the option of emigrating to Amsterdam permanently. Nancy Stieber (2006) discusses the city-as-space and distinguishes between the image of the city, the imagined city and the imaginary city. This is used as a framework in order to establish how Amsterdam is experienced, or represented or imagined in 30 Nagte in Amsterdam. In addition to an imagined city, Amsterdam is examined as zone and heterotopia, where the focus is on the two incommensurable and mutually exclusive worlds, namely Eastern-Cape (South-Africa) and Amsterdam (Netherlands)