Diaspora and identity: an integrated archaeological and historical investigation into material life, ethnicity, and diet in the district of Vlooienburg, Amsterdam (AD 1600-1800).


This project will focus on the evidence for material life, ethnicity, and diet in the district of Vlooienburg, Amsterdam (1600-1800). It is motivated by a desire to develop an integrated archaeological methodology that enables personal possessions, tableware and food waste recovered from cesspit deposits to be linked to historically-documented households. The project seeks to refine archaeological understandings of the material expressions of ethnicity, status, gender, and religious beliefs in relation to the Sephardic and Ashkenazi Jewish inhabitants and other residents of the Vlooienburg. The project will also, significantly, enhance contemporary public understandings of the multi-ethnic roots of Amsterdam.

The project is timely, as in 2016, the City of Amsterdam, office for Monuments and Archaeology will begin a new project to re-evaluate and complete the analysis of materials excavated in 1980-81 ahead of the construction of the Stopera. This NWO application has been devised to enhance and deepen the impact of this initiative and has been structured to create an overarching framework that will deliver international academic guidance, access to new state-of-the-art forms of scientific analysis, hands-on training for two Phd students, and a robust platform for the dissemination of knowledge in a variety of formats including specialist academic publications, museum exhibitions, public open-days, and a television documentary.

The collaborative impact of the three-way public private partnership that has been established between the University of Amsterdam, the City of Amsterdam, office for Monuments and Archaeology, and the Jewish Historical Museum, will deliver a landmark project of national and international significance.


Wetenschappelijk artikel





Prof. dr. J. Symonds

Verbonden aan

Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, ACASA - Department of Archaeology


J.K. Bakker, Dr. M. Hell, Dr. M. Hell, M. Stolk