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Author Bart Van Loo: ‘Suddenly I became aware that people all around me were having sex’

The acclaimed Belgian writer on his new European history book, its appropriation by the country’s far right, and how his research into erotic literature led to him becoming a husband and father 

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Bart Van Loo's book plays out like a few seasons of 'Game of Thrones'. Photo: Stephan Vanfleteren

Bart Van Loo's book plays out like a few seasons of 'Game of Thrones'. Photo: Stephan Vanfleteren

Bart Van Loo's book plays out like a few seasons of 'Game of Thrones'. Photo: Stephan Vanfleteren

In his native country, Belgium, Bart Van Loo has become something of a literary star. In his latest book, The Burgundians, he harnesses the history of the late middle ages and the origin story of the Low Countries into what has become an unlikely publishing sensation.

Three hundred thousand copies have been sold, a podcast of it has been listened to by millions, and it has sparked cultural debate, with the leader of the country’s far-right party (Vlaams Belang) Tom Van Grieken, citing the book as a testament to the glory of Flanders’ past.


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