​The Broadcaster’s Catacombs: Looking for Literature in a Dutch Listings Magazine (De radiogids 1929–1941)

  • Jeroen Dera Radboud University


As soon as radio became a mass medium in the 1920s and 1930s, broadcasting organizations aired programmes on literary topics. This article explores the function of literature in De radiogids, the weekly periodical of the Dutch socialist broadcaster VARA. Focusing on the pre-war period, the article shows that literary radio programmes received little attention in De radiogids, despite the efforts of literary programme maker Martien Beversluis to establish a literary feature in the magazine. Although these findings suggest that literary radio programmes were of little interest to the VARA, De radiogids contains valuable cultural-historical sources concerning the relationship between radio and literature in the interwar period.

Author Biography

Jeroen Dera, Radboud University

Jeroen Dera is Lecturer in Dutch Literature and a Teacher Trainer in Dutch Language and Literature at Radboud University, Nijmegen. In 2017, he published his monograph Sprekend kritiek: Literatuurprogramma’s in de vroege jaren van de Nederlandse radio en televisie, which analyzes Dutch radio programmes (1925–40) and television shows (1955–75) about literature. He also writes extensively about contemporary Dutch poetry and is an editor of the literary journal DW B. Furthermore, he is a board member of the Jan Campert Stichting, awarding annual literary prizes to Dutch and Flemish authors.

Special Issue