Edward Brongersma

Edward Brongersma , born onin Haarlem ( Netherlands ) and diedIn Overveen , was a Dutch jurist and politician . He was elected from the Dutch Labor Party to the Senate from 1946 to 1950 and from 1963 to 1977 and Chairman of the Judiciary Committee of the Senate from 1969 to 1977. Edward Brongersma is best known for his publications and his position in favor of sexual legislation, As well as a defender of the rights of pedophiles and a practice of pedophilia based on “consent” 1 .


Edward Brongersma, son of a doctor, studied law at the University of Amsterdam from 1931 to 1935. He then prepared his thesis on Portuguese constitutional law of 1933 and the corporatism of António de Oliveira Salazar that he admired Many in this period. In 1940, he obtained cum laude the degree of Doctor of Law at the Catholic University of Nijmegen. His thesis on the construction of the corporatist state knew several reissues.

After the Second World War, he soon became a lawyer and politician. From 1940 to 1950 he worked as a lawyer in Amsterdam. In 1946, he entered the Senate as a member of the Labor Party (first period 1946 to 1950, followed later by a second period from 1963 to 1977). During this same period, it is fitting in the Municipal Council of the city of Heemstede.

These two quarries were abruptly interrupted when in 1950 he was sentenced to ten months’ imprisonment under article 248 bis of the Penal Code for sexual relations with a young man of 16 or 17 years of age (born in 1932 or 1933). At that time the sexual majority of homosexual relationships was 21 years.

He then worked as a journalist and from 1956 to 1959 ran the Federation for Social Assistance in Family Problems in Haarlem. He returned to the bar in 1959 and served in Haarlem until the end of his career in 1980. From 1960 to 1967 he was an assistant professor at the Institute of Criminology, Department of the Law Faculty of the State University Of Utrecht . In 1963 the Labor Party asked him to be a member of the Upper House again, which he did until his resignation in 1977. From 1968 to 1977 he was chairman of the Standing Committee on Justice of the Upper House. In 1975 the Queen appointed him Knight of the Order of the Dutch Lion , for his work as a member of Parliament and other merits. He retired as a senator in 1977 and as a lawyer in 1980.

He is best known for his publications and positions in relation to the liberalization of sexual legislation. Thanks to his expertise as a lawyer and a senator, he played an important role in the abolition of article 248 bis of the Penal Code, which itself condemned him in 1950. The penalty for homosexual relations was then reduced from 21 to 16, the same age limit as for heterosexual sex. Brongersma wants to go further, proposing a further reduction in age limits and giving young people greater freedom in their sexual relations.

Around these themes he created during his lifetime collections of literary and scientific works. He founded in 1979 the Foundation ‘ D r Edward Brongersma Stichting’ to safeguard the collections and make them available for research. After his retirement he devoted all his time to his publications, his foundation, and public information in terms of sexuality. The Netherlands authorities have recognized the Foundation as being aimed at ‘a general social interest’, according to Article 24 of the Taxes and Estates Act.

The French writer Gabriel Matzneff mentions in his diary his meeting in Manila – where he practiced sex tourism – with Edward Brongersma in search of contacts with “younger young people” 2 .

In the 1990s , the relative tolerance that may have existed in the Netherlands towards pedophilia gradually disappears: because of his notoriety, Edward Brongersma is harassed by her neighbors and attacks on public roads. In April 1998, depressed, he ended his days with the help of her doctor 3 . Although he was neither in the terminal phase of an illness nor in a state of particular suffering, he felt that he had “lived his life” and that it was no longer necessary to continue living. This act then makes it possible to relaunch the debate on euthanasia in the Netherlands.

After his death, his library and archives were transferred to the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam. Part of his collection of images is nonetheless seized by Dutch police as child pornography 4 .


Brongersma has written about 1200 books and articles on subjects as diverse as law, politics, religion, philosophy, history, literature, sexuality and social conditions. His work on sexuality, centered on ephebophilia , pedophilia , pornography and sexual preference, represents the major part of his work. Several of his articles have been published in French, among others in the literary and scientific magazine ‘Arcadie’. The most important publications on these subjects are: Pedofilie (1960), Das Verfehmte Geschlecht (1970, in German), Sex in Straf ( Sexuality and punishment , 1972), Over pedofielen en kinderlokkers ( Pedophiles and rapists , 1975) and his magnum opus in two volumes Loving Boys (published in the United States, 1986/1990).

Notes and references

  1. ↑ Theo GM Sandfort, Alex X. Van Naerssen, and Edward Brongersma, Male Intergenerational Intimacy: Historical, Socio-Psychological, and Legal Perspectives Haworth Press, 1991, p. 142
  2. ↑ Gabriel Matzneff, My loves decomposed: 1983-1984 newspaper , Gallimard, 1990, p 233
  3. ↑ Raphael Cohen-Almagor, Euthanasia in the Netherlands: the policy and practice of mercy killing , Springer-Verlag New York Inc., 2004, p. 165
  4. ↑ Child porn charges on Toronto nudist  [ archive ] , Toronto sun, 3 October 2010