re: Dutch “Water Culture”

Cornelius Disco published Disco, Delta Blues in Technology and Culture the journal of the Society for the History of Technology.

In the piece he examines the concept of a Dutch specific “water culture“, which  post – Katrina has been put forward as the model of what New Orleans/Louisiana could do, but for a lack of big-thinking. Mr. Disco argues that “There is a germ of truth in this, but also considerable mystification” yet he also points out “The keystone of Dutch water culture was the conviction that conflict, left unresolved, would ultimately undermine everyone’s defensive posture. Sea-level rise and anthropogenic soil subsidence required continual improvements in drainage and flood defense systems. It was not so much ‘sink or swim’ as ‘sink or organize’…Dutch water culture is not only a concatenation of multilevel technological systems and modes of organization. It is also a mentality“.


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