Elizar Veerman

DE WIJK

by Elizar Veerman

Ik ben geboren in een land
Dat niet van mezelf is
Ik ben geboren in een land
Zonder palmen en kruidnagels
Ik ben geboren in een land
Zonder te leren wie ik ben
Ik ben geboren in een land
Ik heb mezelf

Djodjie C.A. Rinsampessy, Begitu Sadja Zomaar

RMS, Assen, Drenthe
RMS Colors, Assen, Drenthe
Rafaël Hitipeuw, 3rd Generation
1st Generation Statue, Moordrecht, Zuid-Holland

As a third generation Dutch-Moluccan boy who is born and raised by a Dutch mother and Moluccan father outside of the Moluccan neighborhoods in The Netherlands, I’ve always felt a certain distance between myself and my peers who were brought up in one of the neighborhoods. As a child I use to visit various neighborhoods regularly in the weekend together with my father for family ceremonies, church services and parties, but always noticed internally that I wasn’t completely part of “De Wijk” so to speak.

1st Generation Families, Moordrecht, Zuid-Holland
Alberto Gomies, 2nd Generation
RMS Colors, Vaassen, Gelderland
Aldoméjo Rering, 4th Generation

Over the years this became more clear through communication with third generation peers who were brought up inside the neighborhoods. Most of my peers were still homogeneous and more aware of their collective Moluccan diaspora identity. I was clearly culturally assimilated towards the other culture due to my Dutch upbringing, which you could notice in the articulation of my Moluccan identity in relation towards how my peers articulated their Moluccan identities.

RMS, Vaassen, Gelderland
Djaverron Tuhumury, 4th Generation
Björn Haurissa, 3rd Generation
RMS Colors, Wormerveer, Noord-Holland

With the knowledge that slowly most of these neighborhoods are starting to lose their cultural homogeneity and some already disappeared, the current fourth and fifth generation of youth are in the middle of a transition between maintaining “De Wijk’s” cultural heritage and articulating a hybrid Dutch-Moluccan identity for the future. By inquiring this transition, I re-discover the internal distance I felt as a child towards “De Wijk”, an assimilated distance that has yet to come for a community in transition…

El-Yanae Sahusilawane, 5th Generation