For best experience please turn on javascript and use a modern browser!

Dr. T.M.C. (Tamara) van Kessel

Faculty of Humanities
Capaciteitsgroep Algemene Cultuurwetenschappen
Photographer: Greetje van der Werf

Visiting address
  • Turfdraagsterpad 15
  • Room number:1.06
Postal address
  • Postbus 94551
    1090 GN Amsterdam
Contact details
  • Profile

    Research interests

    • International cultural policy
    • The history of (cultural) nationalism
    • Cultural heritage: policy, theory and intellectual history
    • Italian nineteenth- and twentieth-century history
    • Cultural identity and politics in the Mediterranean area
    • European cooperation between North and South
    • Italian Fascism and European history of the interwar period



    • Since August 2016 programme coordinator of the dual MA Heritage and Memory Studies (inluding coordination of the mandatory 30 EC internships).
    • Since August 2011 teaching as Assistant Professor for both the BA and the MA Cultural Sciences (designer and lecturer of the course 'Internationaal cultuurbeleid'), as well as for the dual MA Heritage and Memory Studies (core courses 'Who Owns the Past?' and 'Current Issues: Excursion Abroad').
    • Practical course 'Erfgoedpraktijk', guiding students putting heritage theory into practice in a project for the historical gardens of Beeckestijn, master programme Heritage Studies, University of Amsterdam (Spring/Summer 2011).
    • Seminar 'Kunstwerelden: Theorie en Beroepspraktijk' on sociology of the arts, bachelor Cultural Sciences, University of Amsterdam (Autumn/Winter 2010 & 2011).
    • Lectures on 'Culture and the Makeability of Society', master programme Cultural Sciences, University of Amsterdam (Autumn/Winter 2010 & 2011).


    Public events


    • Session co-organizer and speaker, 'National Identities and World Heritage', The 22nd International Congress of Historical Sciences (Jinan, China, 23-29 August 2015).
    • 'The European Inheritance: mobilizing history after the Second World War', 22nd International Conference of Europeanists (Sciences-Po, Paris, France, 8-10 July 2015).
    • 'Empire, Cultural Politics and European Heritage: the British Council and the "Latinisation" of Egypt inthe 1930s', Seventeenth International Conference of the Council for European Studies (Montreal, 15-17 April 2010).
    • 'Cultural Diplomacy and National Self-Representation during the Interbellum: 'Italianità' and 'Britishness' as promoted abroad', presented in the panel session 'Projecting Nations: Culture and Character in International Relations' at the conference We The Peoples: Democratizing International Relations in Britain and Beyond, 1870-1950 organized by Peter Mandler (St. John's College, Cambridge, 8-9 January 2010).
    • 'Italian Colonialism and Cultural Propaganda: The Società Dante Alighieri in Addis Abeba', presented in the panel session 'Italian Studies from the Low Countries: Modern and Contemporary Italy' (coordinated by the Werkgroep Italië Studies), Biennial Conference of the Society for Italian Studies (Londen, Royal Holloway University, 16-19 April 2009).
    • 'Promoting national culture in the Mediterranean: the Dante Alighieri Society and the British Council in the 1930's', Fifth International Conference on Cultural Policy Research, organized by the Istanbul Metropolitan Univeristy & Yeditepe University in cooperation with the International Journal of Cultural Policy (Istanbul, 20-24 August 2004). Also intervened as moderator.
    • 'British life and thought: a global model? The British Council's representations of 'Britishness' on the eve of the Second World War', at the conference Britishness, Identity and Citizenship: The View from Abroad (Huddersfield, University of Huddersfield, 5-6 June 2008).
    • 'Italianitá wereldwijd: de Dante Alighieri Vereniging in de jaren dertig', Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome, for students of Cultural Sciences (University of Amsterdam) on excursion in Rome, 3 April 2008.


    PhD dissertation

    Cultural Promotion and Imperialism. The Dante Alighieri Society and the British Council Contesting the Mediterranean in the 1930s (University of Amsterdam, June 2011).

    Supervisor: prof. dr. P. den Boer / Co-supervisor: prof. dr. R. van der Laarse

  • Publications


    • van Kessel, T. M. C. (2021). Cultural Affiliation and Identity Constructs Under the British Mandate for Palestine. In K. Sanchez Summerer, & S. Zananiri (Eds.), European Cultural Diplomacy and Arab Christians in Palestine, 1918–1948: Between Contention and Connection (1 ed., pp. 431-438). Palgrave Macmillan.


    • van Kessel, T. M. C. (2019). The Dante Alighieri Society in Warsaw. From aristocratic sociability to Fascism’s intellectual showcasing (1924-1934). Incontri: rivista europea di studi italiani, 34(1), 83-96.


    • Ronnes, H., & van Kessel, T. (2016). Heritage (Erfgoed) in the Dutch Press: A history of changing meanings in an international context. Contributions to the History of Concepts, 11(2), 1-23. [details]
    • van Kessel, T. (2016). Foreign Cultural Policy in the Interbellum: The Italian Dante Alighieri Society and the British Council Contesting the Mediterranean. (Heritage and Memory Studies). Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. [details]



    • van Kessel, T. (2012). ‘Si deve amare la mamma anche se povera’: the Dante Alighieri Society, Italian emigration and the safeguarding of italianità, 1870-1925. Incontri: rivista europea di studi italiani, 27(1), 21-29. [details]


    • van Kessel, T. (2011). 'Britishness' as promoted by the British Council in the 1930s and 1940s. British identities since 1707, 2, 267-288. [details]


    • van Kessel, T. (2013). Publiek of privaat? That is the question. Boekman, 25(96), 48-49, 51-55. [details]


    • van Kessel, T. M. C., Meijer-van Mensch, L., & Kistemaker, R. (2012). General Introduction. In L. Meijer-van Mensch, R. Kistemaker, & T. van Kessel (Eds.), City Museums on the Move : A dialogue between professionals from African countries, the Netherlands and Belgium (pp. 6-9). Amsterdam Museum and Reinwardt Academie.

    Talk / presentation

    • van Kessel, T. (speaker) (9-2-2020). Joods erfgoed: wat leeft?, Benjamin Debat: Joods Erfgoed, Amsterdam.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker) (12-6-2019). Heritage: changing perceptions and policy, Jewish Heritage Seminar - University of Amsterdam in cooperation with Rothschild Foundation Hanadiv Europe , Amsterdam.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker) (10-5-2018). Ancient Roman heritage in Dutch spatial planning: the Mediterranean cradle in motion, The Exploitation of the Heritage: Between Politics and Economy, Lecce.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker) (13-4-2018). ‘Foreign Cultural Policy in the Interbellum’, Universiteit Leiden, Leiden.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker), Ickx, J. (speaker) & Hunsacker, R. (speaker) (8-2-2018). Reflecting on the First World War, Vatican diplomacy and destruction of cultural heritage, Spui-lezing, Amsterdam.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker) (7-12-2017). The Dante Alighieri Society before the Second World War: an intellectual network?, Radboud Universiteit.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker), Spiering, M. E. (speaker) & Ketelaar, T. (speaker) (13-6-2017). Keeping calm: de vervroegde Britse verkiezingen, Spui-lezing, Amsterdam.
    • van Kessel, T. (speaker), Sanchez, K. (speaker), Frijhoff, W. (speaker), Fernández-Aguayo , F. (speaker), Wester, K. (speaker) & Kieft, R. (speaker) (12-1-2017). European cultural policies abroad: from past to present, European cultural policies abroad: from past to present, Amsterdam.
    This list of publications is extracted from the UvA-Current Research Information System. Questions? Ask the library or the Pure staff of your faculty / institute. Log in to Pure to edit your publications. Log in to Personal Page Publication Selection tool to manage the visibility of your publications on this list.
  • Ancillary activities
    • No ancillary activities
    • No ancillary activities