Thursday, June 5

Gert Oostindie is director of the KITLV (Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and
Caribbean Studies)and Professor in Caribbean History at Leiden University. He has
published, co-published, and edited over 20 books and 150 articles with a wide range of
publishers. Oostindie served on many editorial, scholarly, and governmental committees
both in the Netherlands and abroad, and frequently appears on Dutch media to discuss his
areas of expertise. His principal focus has been the Caribbean and Dutch colonial history.
He published extensively on the colonial history and decolonization of the Dutch Caribbean,
on history, ethnicity and migration in the Caribbean and Latin America in general, and on
the significance of colonial history to Dutch national identity.

Zihni Özdil is a Lecturer and PhD candidate at Erasmus University’s School of History,
Culture and Communication. Currently, Özdil teaches courses on the history of the Middle
East and North Africa as well as the history of ’the West’, focusing on cultural exchange,
diversity, othering and ‘race’. His PhD research focuses on the secularization process in
early Republican Turkey. Özdil is a columnist for Erasmus Magazine. He writes also articles
and op-eds for various national and international media.

Quinsy Gario conceptualized the performance art project Zwarte Piet Is Racism (Black
Pete is Racism) that takes a critical look at the black servants that are part of the Dutch
Sinterklaas tradition. In 2011 Quinsy was arrested for wearing a t-shirt from his project
during the nationally televised parade connected to the tradition. Quinsy studied Theater,
Film and Television Studies and minored in Gender Studies and Postcolonial Studies at the
University of Utrecht. He is also a poet and an artist having performed and exhibited in The
Netherlands, Britain, Denmark and France among other places. He initiated the critical
platform Roet in Het Eten, a Dutch metaphor for disturbing seemingly pleasant endeavors.
Roet In Het Eten publishes cultural analysis online and produces a radio show on Mart
Radio, a local independent Caribbean and Latin American Diaspora radio station with a
reach of 90.000 listeners in greater Amsterdam.

Jennifer Tosch is a Surinamese-American woman, whose parents were born and raised in
Suriname, South America. Tosch herself grew up in the United States. She initially came to
Amsterdam to follow a postcolonial history course at the BESS (Black Europe Summer
School) in Amsterdam, but was intrigued by the void she encountered regarding positive
narratives about the presence and contributions of the African Diaspora in the
Netherlands. This triggered Tosch to found the Black Heritage Amsterdam Tours, a
organization that seeks to approach the history of Amsterdam from an Africa-centric
viewpoint, and thereby shines a different light on the historic center and canals.

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