Category: Essay

ABSENT-MINDED, UNCOERCED AND “PAINLESS” HUNGARIAN ASSIMILATION IN THE UNITED STATES

ABSENT-MINDED , UNCOERCED AND “PAINLESS” Hungarian Assimilation in the United States To understand the American assimilationist momentum, a few basic characteristics of United States history need to be clarified. First, that the USA is a “multi-ethnic and multi-racial nation” without an actual Staatsvolk (official and dominant nationality). What does this

CLOSING THE GAP? THE WESTERN COMMUNITY AND HUNGARY

This is an edited version of the speech presented on 21 April 2016 at Corvinus University as part of the conference organised by Ottó Hieronymi of Webster University, Geneva, and Péter Ákos Bod of Corvinus University, Budapest, under the title “Hungary, Central Eastern Europe and the Future of the Western

HOW AND (WHY) TO KEEP A DISSIDENT SPIRIT IN SPITE OF ‘TRANSITION’?

AN INTRODUCTORY REMARK Let me start by saying that dissidents were one of the best products of Communism. Probably the best. At one point, Václav Havel said: “A spectre is haunting Eastern Europe: a spectre of what in the West is called ‘dissent’.” The living conditions of this spectre were tough. It

‘THE LANGUAGE OF EUROPE IS TRANSLATION’

A Proposal for the European Union  Umberto Eco once observed that “The language of Europe is translation” (Eco, 1993). This witty aphorism seems particularly true for international science and scholarship, where creative work, especially in the social sciences, is still largely pursued in the various national languages, while research results

IMAGES FROM A LOST WORLD

Normally, in the United States, World War I is one of what I will call our forgotten wars. Everyone seems to remember the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, World War II and the Vietnam War; and, of course, the current conflicts in which my country is involved. But World War

A ROMANCE OF FORTY YEARS

Jerzy Snopek became a researcher at the Institute for Literary Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences in 1976. From 1985 to 1990, he lectured on Polish literature at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest. From 1991 to 1997, he was Secretary of the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Warsaw. Between 2003

MINORITIES VERSUS MAJORITIES – MULTICULTURALISM IN RETREAT

“The essential problem is not the political issue of European federation or the practical question of European economic organisation. The vital question is how to preserve the spiritual inheritance of Europe…”1 These words were written by the excellent English historian, Christopher Dawson in his book Understanding Europe, published in 1951.

FOREWORD TO THE DEMON IN DEMOCRACY

In the first few pages of this important book, Ryszard Legutko describes the oddity whereby former communists adapted far more easily and successfully than former dissidents and anti-communists to the new liberal-democratic regimes established in Central and Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Others have

CONCLUSION – EXCERPT FROM THE DEMON IN DEMOCRACY

Excerpt from The Demon in Democracy*   One can look at the affinities between communism and liberal democracy from both a narrower and a wider prospect. The narrower point of view may lead us to a sad conclusion that the modern Western world never really understood quite correctly the communist

SPEAKING OF ‘EASTERN EUROPE’

Apart from Iceland, which is a European country situated by itself out in the North Atlantic, the east-west extremes of Europe are the west coast of Ireland at 10 degrees west longitude and Russia’s Ural Mountains at 60 degrees east longitude. The central meridian of these extremes is 25 degrees