Culture of Belgium

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A discussion of Belgian culture requires discussing both those aspects of cultural life shared by 'all' or most of the Belgians, regardless of what language they speak, and also, the differences between the main cultural communities: the Flemish people from Flanders, Brussels and the French-speakers from Brussels and Wallonia. This last opinion (Brussels and Wallonia), is rejected by the Manifesto for Walloon culture and also by regionalist from Brussels [1]

Most Belgians tend to view their culture as an integral part of European culture or Western culture; nevertheless, both main communities tend to make their thousands of individual and collective cultural choices mainly from within their own community, and then, when going beyond, the Flemish draw intensively from both the English-speaking culture (which dominates sciences, professional life and most news media) and the Netherlands, whereas French-speakers focus on cultural life in Paris and elsewhere in the French-speaking world (la Francophonie), and less outside. A truly scientific discussion would also include discussion of the different cultures of Belgian ethnic minorities such as the Jews who have formed a remarkable component of Flemish culture — in particular that of Antwerp — for over five hundred years.




Some of the most impressive museums in Belgium are The Royal Museum for Fine Arts, in Antwerp, which has an admirable collection of works by Peter Paul Rubens, the Groeningemuseum, in Bruges, with the Flemish Primitives, and the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium in Brussels, which has a cinema, a concert hall, and artworks of many periods, including a large René Magritte collection.

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