Ton van Kalmthout

Ego documents. History of Philology. History of Literary Education. International circulation of literature. Literary Institutions.

Ton van Kalmthout is a senior researcher at NL-Lab on behalf of the Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands (Huygens ING), and an endowed professor of Dutch Literature at Leiden University. He gained his Master’s degree in Dutch Language and Literature at the University of Nijmegen and, in 1998, his PhD degree at the University of Amsterdam, with a thesis entitled Muzentempels. Multidisciplinaire kunstkringen in Nederland tussen 1880 en 1914 (Temples of the Muses: Multidisciplinary Art Clubs in the Netherlands between 1880 and 1914). He worked as a teacher of Dutch at secondary school, and taught literature at the teacher-training programmes for Dutch at Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences and Leiden University. He was also employed as a teacher and postdoctoral researcher at the Dutch Language and Culture section of the University of Groningen. In 2005, he was appointed at Huygens ING. In 2017 and 2019, he was a visiting professor at the KU Leuven departments of Dutch Language and Literature (Leuven) and Translation Studies (Brussels). He is the co-editor of the book series Bibliotheca Dissidentium Neerlandicorum (Verloren Publishers).

Much of Van Kalmthout’s research focuses on the international transfer and circulation of literature in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He has written c. 75 articles and chapters on cultural associations, theatre history, the history of literary education and philology, as well as the national and international dissemination and reception of literature. He has led several NWO-funded research projects in these areas. He is currently principal investigator of the NWO/FWO project ‘Eastbound: The Distribution and Reception of Dutch-language Literature, 1850-1990’. In addition, he is project leader of several editions of nineteenth-century ego-documents.

At NL-Lab, Van Kalmthout is continuing his investigations into the history of philology, focusing on Dutch identity in literary histories and related treatises since the early nineteenth century. His research on the international circulation of literature focuses on literature by and for Dutch emigrants, on views of the Netherlands and its inhabitants in National Socialist Westforschung, and on the Dutch reception of literature originally written in German, French and English.