“The mother, the wife” and The Riddle

Corina Koolen’s PhD defense already received much attention in Dutch newspapers, but when the Dutch organization CPNB (Collectieve Propaganda voor het Nederlandse Boek; Collective Propaganda for the Dutch Book) decided its new theme for the 2019 book week, new interest sprang up. CPNB chose as a theme “De moeder, de vrouw” (“The mother, the wife” or “The mother, the woman”), after a poem by Martinus Nijhoff. This might not have caused much of a stir, had they not asked two male authors to write the accompanying Book Week novella and essay. This resulted in a protest by both female and male authors. On June 18th Koolen was interviewed for Nieuwsuura Dutch human interest programme, and asked to explain the problematic nature of this CPNB action. Radio programme Focus also payed attention to the discussion. Finally, Dutch newspaper Trouw published an interview, asking Koolen to discuss five possible solutions to the problem of female authors still not receiving equal attention in the Netherlands.

Comments are closed.