Ridiculing the Unreasonable. The Political Aesthetics of Zondag met Lubach
Number of pages
SourceEuropean Journal of Cultural Studies, 25, 2, (2022), pp. 406-421
20 april 2022
Article / Letter to editor
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European Journal of Cultural Studies
SubjectCategories Contested; Europe in a Changing World
This article analyses the highly popular and critically acclaimed Dutch satirical TV show Zondag met Lubach (2014-2021), using the approach of political aesthetics. Through this approach, which focuses on the form, style and rhetoric of cultural artefacts, and the way in which these elements perform politics, it is shown that Zondag met Lubach was much less critical and progressive than is often thought. Overall, the show mainly defended the existing liberal status quo. It did so by depoliticising its own viewpoint, which was presented as simply reasonable, while ideas and practices that did not fit within this viewpoint were framed as irrational and ridiculous. It also turns out that the solutions it proposed for current social issues were strongly inclined towards individual responsibility, much less towards structural changes. This is another way in which the show acted as a defender of the given socio-political order.
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