Anti-corruption discourse as a feature of political system change. The case of the Dutch Republic in 1650–1651
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This article puts forward a proposal for the broadening of the research agenda on corruption through a twofold change in perspectives, namely concentrating on the “corruption talk” in place of essentialist views, and addressing anti-corruption in place of corruption. An evaluation is undertaken of the role of anti-corruption discourse in times of political change on the basis of the Dutch Republic in the midseventeenth century. Analyzing the exemplary speech by Adriaen Veth against corruption, given to the Great Assembly in 1651, and the role of the figure of Cornelis Musch, this article depicts the anti-corruption discourse as an important tool of argumentation for the newly established regime to gain legitimacy with regards to both its theoretical foundation and for the process of coming to terms with the previous regime.
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