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Conference – Four Nations Commemoration, 1620-2020: The Pilgrims and the Politics of Memory

The international Leiden Mayflower 400 conference at Leiden University will challenge the Anglo-American approach which has so often dominated the popular narrative of the early colonization of North America and prioritize a “four-nations” approach to include Native American and Dutch perspectives.

Taking the Mayflower anniversary as starting point and central concern, this interdisciplinary conference seeks to interrogate the myths, power-bases, mobility, and knowledge production of colonial pasts through three distinct but related strands:

  • Contesting memories and commemorations
  • Colonialism, migration, and indigenous impact and resistance
  • The production of knowledge, print culture, and national myths

The confirmed keynote speaker is Francis J. Bremer, Professor Emeritus of History at Millersville University, and internationally-renowned Puritanism scholar and coordinator of the website New England Beginnings.

National DNA Day on April 25, 2020 in the Netherlands, is part of the Leiden 400 Commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower voyage.

Migrants, as the Pilgrims were, are inextricably linked to the history of the Netherlands (and Leiden in particular). Especially in the 16th and 17th centuries, the Netherlands attracted many migrants due to economic prosperity and the tolerant attitude towards different religions.

How do the Pilgrims fit into the larger story of migration throughout human history? And what does DNA tell us? With DNA we can not only learn something about the past. We can also learn something about migration & Leiden in 2020. Not only that, a DNA test can tell something about yourself, about your past and possibly something about your future too. Are you curious and do you want to know more?

BplusC, Heritage Leiden, and LeveDNA! have put together an interactive and educational family day with lectures on DNA, various DNA activities (isolate your own DNA and multiple DNA games), workshops and much more. Learn more about migration, the Pilgrims, about the DNA-world and … about yourself!


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