The PhD candidates will carry out research within the framework of the research project “Institutional memory in the making of colonial culture: history experience and idea in Dutch colonialism in Asia, 1700 – 1870.” This project investigates how colonial officials and missionaries legitimized their work in Asia. This long-term cricital analysis includes both the VOC period and the early colonial state. It is centred around daily work routines and reporting among ‘residenten’, ministers and missionaries and the Governor General. The hypothesis is that this interplay between local practice and intellectual justification was crucial to the development of enduring and persistent Dutch visions about the legitimacy of colonial rule.
The two PhD projects each focus on a specific sector within the colonial workspace and both have a strong emphasis on archival research:
PhD Project 1: “Reproducing past, present and future: colonial visions and experience in Asia.” This projects investigates the long term development of colonial mentality at the level of the colonial bureaucrats in Asia.
Phd project 2: “Spirited narratives of purpose and progress: church-society engagement alongside the (Company-) state.” This project focuses on work and worldview of Church ministers and missionaries in Asia, who functioned within and alongside the colonial enterprise.
The project is financed by NWO within the framework of the Vernieuwingsimpuls (VIDI) and the PhD students will be working in a team together with the project leader (Alicia Schrikker) and a postdoc.