Introduces the land, the people, the economy, and the government of the Netherlands
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A somewhat unfocused entry in the ``Portraits of the Nations'' series, this time covering the Netherlands--its people, land, and daily life; history; the economy, government, social system, and leisure activities; problems clouding the future. Van Stegeren, a journalist who lives in Amsterdam, emphasizes the paradoxical nature of the Dutch national character and its evolution and writes frankly about social issues: prostitution, drug use, crime, the black market, abortion, euthanasia, racism. Although he explains the Dutch position without making value judgments, the differences between Dutch attitudes and methods of handling these matters and those prevailing in the US are evident. Overall, his portrayal of people and life is somber: ``a climate of prosperity with little instinct for enjoying it.'' Van Stegeren's vocabulary is also often difficult, while his emphases can be curious--among other things, in discussing literature he mentions no YA or children's authors. A dense, complex book of dubious accessibility for young people. Bibliography; maps, b&w photos, charts, and index not seen. (Nonfiction. 13+) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From School Library Journal:
Grade 7 Up-- A list of mini - facts about the Netherlands precedes Van Stegeren's description of the nature of the Dutch. Aspects of their culture are conveyed in the details of everyday life including school, weather, status of women, food, celebrations, and traditions. One chapter emphasizes the role that water has played in the history of the low-lying country; a history from early to modern times is included, plus sections on the economy and government.A chapter on welfare and justice reveals the Dutch people's pragmatic approach to social applications of law. The text reads interestingly and research facts are easily extracted. All in all, this is a comprehensive and useful book. Younger readers might opt for Dennis Fradin's The Netherlands (Childrens, 1983). This title is enriched by the inclusion of many information boxes that supplement the text. The bibliography is lengthy and subjectively divided. A good purchase where social studies curriculum include western Europe. --Sylvia V. Meisner, Allen Middle School, Greensboro, NC
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description HarperCollins, 1991. Library Binding. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0060225386