History Europe

History - list of articles in the section Europe History

  • Dutch navy commander Helfrich signs the Japanese capitulation treaty on board the USS Missour on September 2, 1945 (Wikimedia)
    Remembering the Second World War in the Netherlands: Historical sound from the 1950’s- Part 5, Lt Adm Conrad Helfrich remembers the war in the Pacific
    This programme is part of the series Remembering the Second World War in the Netherlands: Historical Sound of the 1950's  In 1945, the Second World War continued in the Pacific and Southeast …
  • Glenda Jackson
    Pete Myers interviews Glenda Jackson and Nigel Fisher (1973)
    This programme is part of the series Pete Myers' interviewsBefore joining us at Radio Netherlands in 1976, Pete Myers hosted BBC programmes like “Late Night Extra” and “PM” …
  • The making of the film “Gandhi”
    David Attenborough’s epic film biography of Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948) presents a sweeping, masterful image of the life of India’s great pioneer of independence and 20th-century …
  • Just like yester-year: Remembering World War Two 40 years later
    40 years after the the end of World War Two, Pete Myers presents a collage of studio-read recollections of the war years. There are also contributions from survivors themselves. The programmme is …
  • Revolution in the family: William and Mary come to the throne of England
    This broadcast was timed to coincide with the 300th anniversary of the so-called Glorious Revolution, in which prince William of Orange, stadholder of the Dutch Republic, helped fellow Protestants in …
  • Female transvestism in the 17th and 18th centuries
    In the 17th and 18th centuries, it was not uncommon for poor, young women to try and pass as a man. Some became soldiers. Others achieved fame and some even married other women. It was illegal to …
  • In so many words – Language cultures of the European Community: Part 4, Greek
    This programme is part of the series In So Many WordsWithin the European Community, Greek has the unique distinction of being a language spoken uninterruptedly for four thousand  years. It has …
  • Yours Anne, love Zlata: Diaries of two young girls
    This is the story of two girls who kept diaries. One is Anne Frank, who lived in hiding in Amsterdam during the Nazi occupation. The other is Zlata Filipović, who was about ten years old when she …
  • Happy Station: D-Day special June 5, 1994
    This programme marked the 50th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944 — D-Day — the beginning of the end of Hitler’s Nazi Reich. Presenter Pete Myers was a child in …
  • Peter the Great: Part 2 of 3 – The Great Embassy
    There are very good reasons for calling “the most excellent and great sovereign prince Pyotr Alekseyevich, leader of all the Russias” Czar Peter the Great. It is impossible to exaggerate …
  • Peter the Great: Part 1 of 3 – The carpenter czar
    There are very good reasons for calling “the most excellent and great sovereign prince Pyotr Alekseyevich, leader of all the Russias” Czar Peter the Great. It is impossible to exaggerate …
  • Wintering on Nova Zembla: The last voyage of Willem Barentz
    In 1596, a Dutch ship under Willem Barentz got stuck in the ice of the Arctic Ocean near Nova Zembla, during an attempt to discover a Northeast Passage to Asia. They had to try and survive the Arctic …
  • The body snatchers
    In Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries, the trade in human flesh was at its height. Surgeons studying anatomy needed corpses to practice on and the body snatchers provided them. Now people donate …
  • The Battle of the Atlantic
    The Battle of the Atlantic, a fierce five-year battle fought in the ocean during World War II, was one of the most intense and violent naval confrontations in history. It is the story of the ships …
  • Millennium: Waiting for the end, Part 1 of 2
    In Western Christian culture, the arrival of a millenium, a one-thousand-year milestone measuring the time since the birth of Jesus Christ, is a date of great psychological significance. This …
  • Spanish civil war veteran
    To mark the 60th anniversary of the International Brigades’ fighting the fascists under Franco, a reunion was held. Dheera Sujan has put together a programme with an American veteran, now 84, …
  • All Our Colours to the Mast (Award-winning Marshall Plan poster by Reijn Dirksen)
    A new dawn for Europe: the Marshall Plan
    In 1947, U.S. President Harry Truman and his secretary of state, General George C. Marshall, launched the idea of a programme to rebuild war-torn Europe. The Old Continent’s proud states were …
  • Berlin: The once and future capital
    Shortly after Germany was reunited in 1990, it was decided to reinstate Berlin as the capital of the country once again. This ravaged and once divided city is now Europe’s biggest construction …
  • “He who does not howl with the wolf”: Composer Richard Wagner’s great-grandson speaks out
    In 1997, a book appeared in German that provided more troubling insights into the dark reputation of the Nazi cult around the composer Richard Wagner. But this time the criticism came from the …
  • Wake of the Half Moon: the Dutch colony of New Netherland, Part 3 of 3 – The Duke of New Amsterdam
    New Netherland was a vast 17th century colony along the east coast of North America, ruled by the Dutch for sixty years. Part Three concerns its darkest hour. The charismatic, if tyrannical, governor …
  • A Promise of peace: The Peace of Westphalia of 1648
    In 1648, the leading powers of war-torn Europe finally agreed on the terms of a treaty that would end 30 years of devastating military conflict between Catholic and Protestant forces. The Peace of …
  • The last Kaiser – The dramatic story of Wilhelm II, the last emperor of the German Reich
    “The Last Kaiser”, the life of Kaiser Wilhelm II, grandson of Queen Victoria and emperor of the German Reich from 1888 until 1918. Wilhelm fled to the Netherlands in the last days of the …
  • Stories of Our Century: “All Quiet on the Western Front”
    This programme is part of the series Stories of Our CenturyIn 1999, Radio Netherlands broadcast a series of 12 programmes telling the story of the 20th century through famous books. In each …
  • Stories of our century: “The grapes of wrath”
    This programme is part of the series Stories of Our CenturyIn 1999, Radio Netherlands broadcast a series of 12 programmes telling the story of the 20th century through famous books. In each …
  • The Black Death: The bubonic plague and its vast consequences
    The Black Death or Great Plague was one of the most devastating waves of disease and death in human history. Modern historians of the Middle Ages estimate that up to 200 million people succumbed to …
  • The history of toys
    Some of the earliest things children played with were stones, shells and bones. Children played games thousands of years ago. The original meaning of the word “toy” is trinket, trifle and …
  • Lady Justice statue in front of Russian Supreme Court
    New game, new rules
    When the all-embracing communist system collapsed, and with it the state-run central economy, the new Russia lacked a body of laws to replace the rules of the state-run central economy. In drafting …
  • Entrance Gate at Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp (DHM)
    Train to Sachsenhausen
    Paragraph 175 of the German penal code, enacted in 1871, stated that “a male who indulges in criminally indecent activities with another male …will be punished with jail.” But as early as …
  • Filmmakers on the Balkans conflict
    Dheera Sujan features three women filmmakers who made movies on the Balkans conflict: a Norwegian filmmaker who spent months filming prisoners in a camp in Bosnia, a Canadian director who made a film …
  • Saints Alive
    For well over a thousand years, the saints have been held up as examples for Catholics around the world. Though the Church sets the standards for sainthood, the choice of saints is often dependent on …
  • Two tales of the city: Water and land in Amsterdam, Part 2 of 2 – The windmiller’s tale
    In this new millennium, Amsterdam, like so many cities around the world, has been facing the challenge of building for an expanding population, a changing economy and new technologies. In these two …
  • Collective memory: Hana’s suitcase, Part 3 of 4
    Two people from two continents are brought together by a little girl’s suitcase found at Auschwitz after the war. The story of the search for Hana’s suitcase was produced by Karen Levine …
  • Witch hunts: McCarthyism, Maleficarum and memory
    In this programme, we look at three tales of witch hunting:  McCarthyism – the wave of political witch hunts in 1950’s America. We hear about the persecution of those accused of …
  • Srebrenica: The NIOD report
    This programme focuses on the NIOD (Dutch Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies) report on the Dutch involvement in the fall of Srebrenica, the worst atrocity in Europe since the end of …
  • A significant present: Dutch Mennonites in Poland
    Mennonites are a group of Christians founded by a former priest from Friesland, Menno Simons, in the 16th century. Despite centuries of persecution and discrimination because of their strong pacifist …
  • The Human Be-In: The hippies
    In 1967, a huge outdoor event in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco marked the official beginning of the hippy movement. It was called the ‘Human Be In’. It attracted the focus of world media and …
  • Stalin: The engineer
    This programme was broadcast to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin (1878-1953). During 25 years of terror and tyranny, from 1927 until his death, Stalin reshaped …
  • Let them eat cake
    On July 14th, France celebrated Bastille Day, commemorating the beginning of the French Revolution and the ideas of equality and liberty for all. Popular history credits the start of the uprising as …
  • The best of times, the worst of times: War and memory
    In Europe, the signs of remembrance of war can be found everywhere. Fields in France, Belgium and the Netherlands are still turning up traces of the untold numbers of war dead. In this programme, …
  • Footnotes from the fields: A new generation learns about the First World War
    The First World War came to an end one hundred years ago, but its impact is still felt in many points of friction to this day, and its lessons are never to be forgotten. This award-winning programme …
  • The Volga boatmen: The wanderings of an icon
    The programme traces the story of the Volga boatmen in art, starting with Ilya Repin’s painting of the Barge-Haulers in the Russian Museum in Saint Petersburg, and an interview with art historian …
  • Beethoven’s 9th: A beginner’s guide to the Ode to Joy
    It was a favourite of the Nazi Party; it was adopted by Communists to celebrate Marx’s ideals; it was played at the fall of the Berlin Wall to celebrate the collapse of Communism; and it’s currently …
  • The writer Oscar Wilde, tried and imprisoned for his relationship with a young aristocrat, one of the more tragic and infamous chapters in the story of 19th + 20th-century homosexual men
    Pride and prejudice: Gay men in the past two centuries
    To be a gay man in the 19th century was to live in the shadows. And to be openly homosexual meant almost certain alienation from family and friends. But how does this compare to the 20th century, a …
  • Children of the hated: The “Lebensborn” programme of racial breeding
    When Nazi Germany invaded and occupied Norway in 1940, it expanded a system of selective breeding to its Nordic captives. “Lebensborn”, as it was called, was a project designed to …
  • Adams in Amsterdam, Part 2 of 3 – Dearest of friends
    During the American war of independence from Britain, many years before he became the second American president, John Adams represented his country as the first American ambassador to the …
  • Camp Westerbork, Boulevard des Misères
    Camp Westerbork’s List: Waiting for deportation
    For more than two years during World War II, Camp Westerbork served as a transit point in the northeast of the Netherlands for the deportation of Dutch Jews and Roma to Nazi extermination camps in …
  • A Hiroshima story
    On a sunny August morning in 1945, Keijiro Matsushima sat in his math class in Hiroshima. He looked out the window, saw two American bombers in the clear blue sky and suddenly his world was torn …
  • Imagination is the instrument of compassion
    New York author Jonathan Safran Foer’s novel “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close” is part of a wave of what has been dubbed “post-9/11 fiction”. But some critics say not enough time has passed to …
  • Interview with Count Berthold Schenk von Stauffenberg
    In 1944, at the height of the Second World War, high-ranking German officers and officials attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler, the Führer of the Third Reich. On July 20, Count Claus Schenk von …
  • Banned Books (©MvdMeer)
    The State We’re In: Banned Books
    Ever since the invention of printing, books have been banned, blacklisted, boycotted, burned and bowdlerized. Books can be dangerous, but the right to produce and distribute a book is essential to …