From the Capital of Europe (and Belgium) to the Birthplace of Art Nouveau, from the world's most beautiful town square to Hitler's favorite building; Brussels has many faces. In this seminar, we explore what makes Belgium's capital a diverse and lively city, both in the past and present.
Brussels is not just chocolate, beer, and the Grand Place. It has a history dating back to the Middle Ages but, unlike other cities in Belgium, it only grew in importance. Today it’s not only the capital of Belgium but also of the European Union. Its political and economic importance throughout history has left its marks on today's Brussels, a historically diverse but at the same time modern and lively city.
This seminar will give an overview of the diverse ‘faces’ of Brussels by focusing on what can be observed and visited today: the European Quarter, the aristocratic or Royal Quarter, the Historic Center with its UNESCO World Heritage Grand Place but also Brussels as the birthplace of Art Nouveau and as the capital of Nazi-occupied Belgium.
Led by Natalie Lefevre, an expert on Belgium's history and politics, this interactive seminar will explore the many faces of Brussels. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of Brussels' past and present.
Belgian native Natalie Lefebre has a PhD in International Studies with a focus on social-political and conflict studies (UK) but her first university degree was a Master in Cultural Studies from Ghent University. Natalie decided to combine her educational background with her interest and passion for sustainable and educational tourism and founded a small-scale tour operator in Peru while she was living there. After returning to Belgium, she started guiding visitors in Bruges, Ghent, and other Belgian cities.
This conversation is suitable for all ages.
90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.