Favorite writers from Rotterdam
Rotterdam is widely known for its port, nightlife, and architecture. Lists such as the Lonely Planet place Rotterdam in the top cities of the world. But these eye-catchers are not the only things Rotterdam has to offer. The city has a cultural side that most people aren’t even aware of. Such as that many writers have their origins in Rotterdam. That’s why I made a list with my top 3 Rotterdam writers.
3. Thea Beckman
We will start our top 3 with Thea Beckman. Beckman is an unusual writer. Born in the interwar period in Rotterdam, she was raised with the classical division of roles between men and women. She followed that division by marrying and soon after that by raising three children. She loved writing but didn’t have the chance to write, because her children kept her busy. Only when here children were adults, she started writing books. Many regard her books as children books, but that’s jumping to conclusions. Her books include enough battle, blood and death for an average war movie. Especially ‘Crusade in Jeans’ is an example of those aformentioned characteristics. Besides that: if you’re a fan of history and the Dark Ages in particular, she is the writer you would want to read since most of her stories have a historical element.
2. Jules Deelder
Still going strong at the respectable age of 71, publishing an album of verses every other year. Deelder, always seen wearing black, is known as the mayor of the night in Rotterdam. He uses a short and clear style, most of the time written in an absurdistic manner. If you want to learn a bit more about the typical language used in Rotterdam, Deelder is a great start. Look him up on YouTube to hear him speak those beautiful words in a way only a local from Rotterdam could speak them. With his short and modern style and funny poems Deelder is one of the greatest Rotterdam writers, still living today.
1. Desiderius Erasmus
Although there is some debate whether he was born in Rotterdam or Gouda and taken the fact that Erasmus traveled most of his life through Europa, for the sake of simplicity we shall consider him born and raised in Rotterdam. His name is mostly known for the university or the bridge, but Erasmus was a philosopher, humanist and theologian in the fifteen century. This was a time when the Catholic Church was the only accepted church in Western Europa and criticism was punishable by death or excommunication. Erasmus didn’t fully agree with the way the Catholic Church was governed. He improved the Latin bible translation from Greek and wrote other works about how the clergy should live. Erasmus acquired most of his fame with the ‘Praise of the Folly’ where he did not only critisize the foolishness of the church, but the foolishness of people in general too. Precisely because ‘Praise of the Folly’ was written in a satirical, indirect manner, he could get away with his criticism and become world famous.