'Meisjes Zoals Ik' 

In what way does the degree of acceptance and discrimination by native Dutch influence the degree of integrated dual identity among young people and how do you make a positive change?
The project ‘Meisjes Zoals Ik’ (girls like me) visualizes the research for this answer. The work is a series of double portraits in which I crawled into the skin of my friends. These girls all have a dual identity, an identity that is shaped by Dutch culture and their foreign ethnicity. Although we are in a so-called multicultural society in the Netherlands, the dual identity is not fully accepted by the sideline.

Research has shown that there is integration (dual identity) or segregation (one-sided ethnicity identification) among ethnic minorities. This depends on the extent to which your own community exerts pressure to remain loyal to your origin and not to “become too Dutch". It also depends on the position the group owns in Dutch society. From the acceptance and openness that Dutch society occupies and to what extent the two cultures can be united.

In trying to make a dual identity more accepted I crawled into the skins of my friends. In the presentation, the image is central and this may address questions about dual identities. The intention was to create a change of thought among the viewers by a positive view on the subject. Prejudices reduce the option to equal opportunities. And the only way to circumvent prejudice is to become acquainted. Through the images and the personal interviews that I have taken from all my friends, I try to put this into action. In addition, postcards were also present during the exhibition with a number of eye-opening statements by the interviewees.


Liza, Nilofar, Deveney, Sifra, Fiona, Nilay, Nicole, Kanita, Sonja, Kawsar, Safiya & Maudie.

Using Format