The filmmaker interviews some Moroccans who worked as foreign labourers in his father's rusk factory. How did they experience this period in the Netherlands?
In the late 1960s, Gert van Bergeijk, the filmmaker's father, became the manager of a biscuit rusk factory. The Dutch loved to eat rusks, but from the 1970s refused to work at the conveyor to produce them. Help arrived in the form of Moroccan immigrant workers, who were happy to be put up in the factory's boarding house. In the now vacant factory, Van Bergeijk speaks with his father, some Moroccans and their former Dutch supervisors about their experiences. How do they look back on those years and what did the immigrant workers think of their life in the Netherlands? There wasn't any racism yet, the Moroccans recall. But they are critical, too. They would have wanted to learn the Dutch language right away. They think this would have limited the problems society is currently facing. With hindsight, the manager would also have tackled things differently. For example, he would have taught his supervisors about his foreign workers' culture. The film constitutes a personal portrait of a time long gone and the changing country of Holland. Includes interviews, archive footage and photographs of the factory and the workers. Meanwhile, Moroccan music accompanies images of the deserted and dilapidated factory complex.


Executive producer
Set geluid
Production company
Diafragma Films
TV company
RTV Rijnmond

Title: Aan ons den arbeid
Year: 2008
Duration : 49 minutes
Category: Short Documentary
Edition: NFF 2008

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