In this paper I describe and analyze the production and reception of The Merchant of Venice, and in particular the representation of Shylock, in the Netherlands after World War Two, a hitherto unexplored topic. The purpose of this essay is to fill this gap in research, to demonstrate the possible impact World War Two has had on Merchant, and how production and reception of Merchant in the Netherlands differed from those of surrounding countries. While countries such as France, and in particular Germany, used Merchant to confront the past and debate the horrors of Shoah, the Netherlands seemed to react differently. The discrepancy between the historical perception of the Dutch of being a tolerant nation and a haven for Jewish refugees, and the unexpectedly high percentage of Jews deported from the Netherlands—higher than in any other Western European country—had to be resolved after World War Two. In this paper I discuss how this evolving debate found its way into the Dutch Merchants.


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pp. 645-679
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