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Johan Huizinga

Johan Huizinga (1872-1945) was Professor of General and Dutch History in Groningen (1905-15) and Professor of General History at Leiden (1915-41). In addition, he was appointed editor of the literary journal De Gids and chairman of the Division of Letters of the Royal Dutch Academy of the Sciences. In 1942, he spent several months in the hostage camp Sint Michielsgestel, after which he was not allowed to return to Leiden. He died in exile in De Steeg on 1 February 1945.

Herfsttij der middeleeuwen

Herfsttij der middeleeuwen

(Amsterdam University Press, 1919, 416 pagina's)

Johan Huizinga is the greatest of all Dutch cultural historians, whose fascination with the past speaks from every page of his work. He treats different areas and periods with equal ease: France and the Low Countries in the late Middle Ages, Italy and France during the Renaissance, the Dutch Republic during the Golden Age, the United States of America in the twentieth century. His approach was so broad that he found it easy to combine the history of language and the visual arts with what he called ‘the forms of thought and life’ characteristic of any given period.

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Homo Ludens

Homo Ludens

Proeve eener bepaling van het spel-element der cultuur

(Amsterdam University Press, 1938, 209 pagina's)

Johan Huizinga is the greatest of all Dutch cultural historians and his fascination for the past resounds from every page of his work. In many of his books he discusses the play element in culture and as his life was drawing to a close he collected his thoughts on the subject in Homo Ludens. He examines the role of play in law, war, science, poetry, philosophy and art.

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