Literature and the Wadden Sea

Perspectives and place attachment

This unit focuses on the ways place attachment is influenced by perspective, specifically the perspective of insiders versus outsiders to the Wadden Sea area: for example, local residents and tourists. It may consider questions such as how place attachment is figured by authors, narrators and characters who are insiders or outsiders in the area, who gets to be considered an insider or outsider, and on what basis, and whose perspective seems to be privileged in specific texts and across the body of Danish, German and/or Dutch literature. In this, it may pay attention to questions of gender, class and race. The field of coastal history and its explorations of the changing positions of the Wadden Sea area and communities living there in societies in what are now Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands and beyond may also be relevant to this unit. It may provide additional insights into how the question of who is seen as insider and outsider and whose position is privileged in different debates is influenced by historical events and trajectories.

The question of perspective touches on a number of issues relevant to management and policy in the Wadden Sea today, including stakeholder management (and the question of who gets to be a stakeholder) and tourism. These are topics that the course may engage with and that may form the basis of a problem-based learning project.

Suggested secondary readings:

Egberts, Linde and Dag Hundstad. “Coastal Heritage in Touristic Regional Identity Narratives: A Comparison between the Norwegian Region Sørlandet and the Dutch Wadden Sea Area.” International Journal of Heritage Studies. 26.10 (2019): 1073-1087.

Liburd, Janne, Bodil Blichfeldt and Eva Duedahl. “Transcending the nature/culture dichotomy: cultivated and cultured World Heritage nature.” Maritime Studies. 20 (2021): 279-291).

Ritson, Katie and Eveline de Smalen. “Imagining the Anthropocene with the Wadden Sea.” Maritime Studies 20 (2021): 293-303.

Sijtsma, Frans J. et al. “Multi-scale Mapping of Cultural Ecosystem Services in a Socio-ecological Landscape: A Case Study of the International Wadden Sea Region. Landscape Ecology. 24 (2019): 1751-1768.

Urry, John. “The Place of Emotions within Place.” Emotional Geographies. Eds. Joyce Davidson, Liz Bondi and Mick Smith. Abingdon: Routledge, 2016. 77-83.

Walsh, Cormac. “Metageographies of Coastal Management: Negotiating Spaces of Nature and Culture at the Wadden Sea.” Area. 50.2 (2018): 177-185.

Suggested primary readings:

DE Christophersen, Jan. Schneetage. Hamburg: Mareverlag, 2009.

NL (DE) Deen, Mathijs. Het lichtschip. Amsterdam: Thomas Rap, 2020.

NL (DE, DK) Heijmans, Toine. Op zee. Amsterdam: Pluim, 2011.

NL Jaeggi, Adriaan. Held van beroep. Amsterdam: Nieuw Amsterdam, 2008.

NL (DE, FY) Meer, Vonne van der. Eilandgasten; De avondboot; Laatste seizoen. Amsterdam: AtlasContact, 2007. 

DE Neudecker, Christiane. Sommernovelle. Munich: Luchterhand, 2015.

DE (EN) Storm, Theodor. Der Schimmelreiter. Berlin: Verlag der Gebrüder Pätel, 1888.

DE (NL) Timm, Uwe. Vogelweide. Cologne: Kiepenhauer & Witsch, 2013.

NL (DE) Valens, Anton. Vis. Amsterdam: Atlas Contact, 2013.

DK Vik, Kjersti. Mandø. Aschehoug: Oslo, 2009.

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