Staging Dutch History: Linking Past, Present and Future


  • Jeroen Jansen


Jacob Duym, Dutch Revolt / Nederlandse revolutie, episodic framing / episodisch kaderen, cognitive frame / cognitief kader, reasoning devices / redeneertechnieken, siege of Leiden / beleg van Leiden


In the Ghedenck-boeck (1606) Jacob Duym presents events from the Dutch Revolt as stage plays to argue that a fair war was better than a fake peace. Six plays show examples of the treache­rous Spanish enemy and the brave and fearless actions of the Dutch. Some of these plays, such as the one about the siege and relief of Leiden in 1574, stage lower-class characters. This contribution will investigate the role of lower-class cha­racters in this play as manipulations of the reader’s cogniti­ve frame by way of framing. Lower-class figures evoke a complex analogy with the reader that emphasises difference as well as similarity, and in any case empathy and responsibility. Reasoning devices invite the public to read a word or a message within a narra­tive account of a specific issue that has a causal interpreta­tion, an evaluation and a soluti­on. Moreover, the application of lower-class characters enables Duym to move over from ideas about general themes to the particu­lar and the other way around, alternating thema­tic and episodic framing.


How to Cite

Jansen, J. (2017). Staging Dutch History: Linking Past, Present and Future. Journal of Dutch Literature, 8(2). Retrieved from