Volume 7 Issue 4

War and Nation-Building in East-Central Europe in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

Contents

ARTICLES

Ágoston Nagy
Patriotism, Nation, and Masculinity in the Official Propaganda of the Hungarian Insurrectio during the War of the Fifth Coalition (1809) 3

Abstract

Abstract

During the War of the Fifth Coalition (1809), the idea of “national war” was put into practice in the Austrian Empire. Not only the Habsburg military system was reformed, but the war was accompanied by an extensive propaganda campaign, implemented by intellectuals in the service of the Viennese Court. In Hungary, the palatine, Archduke Joseph was responsible for harmonizing the military innovations with the constitutional traditions of the country. The mobilization was carried out mainly by the partly modernized insurrectio, which obliged the masses of nobility to do personal military service in exchange for their privileges. This anachronistic means of defense tried to satisfy, lopsidedly, the demand of manpower in an age of mass warfare. Consequently, the imperial propaganda also had to be adapted to the particular Hungarian situation. This paper investigates this unique Hungarian situation, through analysing the relationship between the military mobilization of the nobility by the insurrectio and the efforts of the official propaganda to construct a valorous and patriotic self-image of the Hungarian nation. First, the study analyses the limited reforms concerning the traditional system of defence of the estates. Second, it presents how the official propaganda of the insurrectio shaped the ideal image of the “noble warrior” on national level in the periods of mobilization, war and demobilization. Third, it discusses the cult of heroes and the fallen of the insurrectio both on national and local (county) level. It argues that this cult proved short-lived in the long run because of the defeat of Austria, the shortness of the war, the uneven involvement of the counties in fighting, and so forth. The paper concludes that the insurrectio of 1809, which was the last great moment of the military mobilization and the valorous patriotic-national ideology of the nobility, did not fit the modern nation-building process and therefore has never incorporated into the Hungarian nationalism as a true “national war.”
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Yulia But
The Austro-Sardinian War (1859) and the Seven Weeks’ War (1866) in Habsburg Schoolbooks 44

Abstract

Abstract

In the second half of the nineteenth century, the Habsburg government had a very complicated task of inventing some form of supranational identity as an alternative to nationalist programs in Cisleithania. It sought to craft this supranational identity first and foremost as part of the self-images of schoolchildren as future citizens. One of the major ways to create and solidify a notion of a common “Austrian” identity in school history classes was to highlight the Habsburg wars, triumphal and bloody battles, and military heroes as reminders of an integrated supranational past. Official instructions obliged teachers to emphasize the “heroic times of Austria,” its “glorious battles,” and its “valiant wars,” as emphasis on these episodes of the past, it was hoped, would further the development of “the idea of the integrated statehood in Austria.” In this article, I offer an example of this cult of the Austrian wars in school education by the ways in which the wars fought during the early period of Francis Joseph’s rule, namely, the Sardinian war of 1859 and the Seven Weeks’ War of 1866, were taught to later generations of schoolchildren. Ironically, the fact that Austria lost these wars was humiliating. Nevertheless, during the late period of Francis Joseph’s rule, narratives and visual depictions of the events of these wars in schoolbooks strongly contributed to the formation of a heroic image of the Austrian army and to the idea of just Habsburg rule. I focus in my discussion first on how the accounts of the wars in schoolbooks deviated from the historical facts and, second, on how these accounts nonetheless furthered the emergence of the “Austrian” identity.
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Balázs Tangl
Military Veterans’ Associations in the Kingdom of Hungary (1868–1914) 71

Abstract

Abstract

One of the typical social consequences of the introduction of compulsory conscription and mass politics in nineteenth century Europe was the emergence of veterans organizations. This study examines the veterans’ movement in the territory of the Kingdom of Hungary between 1867 and 1914. While in Europe and Imperial Austria the widespread military veterans’ organizations were important actors in the relationship between the military and the civilian sphere and also in state policy, in Hungary their spread remained limited. However, their operation, specific ideology and also their reception in local society can provide important lessons about the impact of the military on society, and the forms and workings of loyalty and nationalism in Hungary.
The study consists of two main parts. First, it examines the prevalence and main characteristics of the associations: where and when were they founded, for what purpose were they established, how the state treated them, what social groups did them consist of, and finally how did all this relate to the other half of the empire? The second part of the study presents the activities of veterans’ associations in Hungarian society by drawing on the example of town of Szombathely and Vas County in western Transdanubia. It analyses what activities did they perform in everyday life, what ideologies did they follow, how did they get involved in the life of the local society, and what was their reception in local civil society and administration?
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Jovo Miladinović
Heroes of the Imagined Communities, Soldiers, and the Military: The Case of Montenegro, the Ottoman Empire, and Serbia before the Balkan Wars (1912–13) 105

Abstract

Abstract

The article illustrates the policy of wielding the hero as a symbolic political and nationalizing instrument in the Montenegrin, Ottoman, and Serbian armies before the Balkan Wars. The heroic became an integral part of other social disciplines (such as schools). Besides standing in a clear interdependent relationship, these social disciplines represented a necessary result of various centralizing processes of the governing elites. The primary efforts for the nationalization of the population were undertaken in the pre-/post-military life, in which the role of different state agents was equally important. Hence, the grid of the social disciplines became ever denser, which led to the uniformity of the heroic. This process enabled the legitimization of the ruling elites, subsequent actions in war, and heroization among recruits. The article argues that uniformity of the heroic is lacking in the Ottoman context. Given the ideological context and intellectual background of the preachers of nationalism, the consistency of the Ottoman heroic narrative before, during, and after military service is missing. The article shows that the so-called medievalism closely linked to the heroic offered a framework for constructing continuity between the immediate and distant past, providing meaning to someone’s death. A link between the past, the present, and the future was established, which constructed the nation’s primordial character and the feeling of ancient hatred towards an imaginary enemy.
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Anastas Bezha
The Rise of a National Army or a Colonial One? Albanian Troops in the Austro-Hungarian Army during World War I 141

Abstract

Abstract

The article discusses the under-researched topic of the Albanian troops in the Austro-Hungarian military during World War One. The topic represents a forgotten moment in World War One Balkan historiography, and it is also an unstudied colonial example. Based on English, Hungarian, and German archival and secondary sources, the article first provides a short historical description of the Albanian fighting units under the Ottoman Empire, their organization, and their infamously bellicose nature, up until the independence of the country. The paper then analyzes how these units became part of the Great War (despite the fact that the country itself remained neutral) under the Austro-Hungarian Army; first, as irregular fighting troops (Freischärler Albanien) between 1914 and 1916 and later as ethnical regimental units (Albanisches Korps or Albanische Abteilungen) between 1916 and 1918. Finally, the article compares the Albanian troops to other colonial forces of the time, including how these Albanian units were recruited, trained, and used in the battlefields with the purpose of creating a sense of loyalty to the Habsburg Monarchy. The case study of the Albanian Corps is a prime example of how the inability to ensure safety by force in a newly created state met with the geo-strategic and war necessities of a Great Power through colonial martial practices disguised as transnational help.
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Kevin J. Hoeper
Nationalizing Habsburg Regimental Tradition in Interwar Czechoslovakia 169

Abstract

Abstract

In interwar Czechoslovakia, the construction of a well-founded military establishment was a core component of the state building process. Reflecting broader trends across the post-imperial, particularly post-Habsburg space, Czechoslovak state builders deployed a rhetoric of radical military transformation predicated in part on a rejection of the imperial military legacy. As this article shows, however, certain elements of Habsburg military tradition survived the transition from empire to nation-state. Focusing on the legacy of Bohemia’s old Habsburg regiments, I argue that “imperial” military tradition could be adapted for use in the new republic through a process of selective reimagining. During the interwar period, regimental groups consisting of Czech-speaking Habsburg veterans dedicated considerable time and energy to the project of “nationalizing” Habsburg regimental tradition. By emphasizing the historically Czech character of their former regiments within the broader Habsburg military establishment, these veterans’ groups provided a means by which Bohemia’s old imperial regiments could be incorporated, conceptually, into prevailing interwar narratives of Czech military heritage.
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Patricia Fogelova
“To Work–To Sacrifice–To Die”: The Cult of Military Martyrs and its Manifestation in Slovakia during the years 1938–1945 205

Abstract

Abstract

The Slovak Republic of 1939–1945 was established on the doorstep of the deadliest war in history. It almost immediately became an active participant in the war as an ally of Nazi Germany. Moreover, already in March 1939, Slovakia, just after its foundation, found itself in a military conflict with Hungary. These facts were naturally reflected in all spheres of society, including urban spaces. This study aims to analyze interventions in the public spaces of Slovak towns related to a cult of martyrs. There was strong need to justify the new Slovak Republic’s participation in the war. This need became increasingly pressing, especially after the invasion of the Soviet Union, which met with the disapproval of the majority of the population. I therefore ask how the regime responded to this. I am especially interested in following questions: how were public spaces transformed change in an effort to build a martyr cult before and after the attack on the Soviet Union? Were there significant interventions in connection with this event (the declaration of war against the USSR)? Had the symbol of a martyr or a soldier changed, and if so, how? The study is organized chronologically. I analyze interventions in public spaces during the so-called Little War in March 1939, at the moment of entry into the war against Poland in September 1939, and at the moment of entry into the war against the USSR in June 1941. I examine interventions on architecture-material level which involved the renaming streets and the creation of memorials. I also focus on perceptions of the street as a “stage” for military parades or ceremonies in the course of which soldiers were awarded decorations.
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BOOK REVIEWS

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Az 1196–1235 közötti magyar történelem nyugati elbeszélő forrásainak kritikája [A critical study of the Western narrative sources of Hungarian history from 1196 until 1235]. By Tamás Körmendi. Reviewed by Judit Csákó 235
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Medicinische Policey in den habsburgischen Ländern der Sattelzeit: Ein Beitrag zu einer Kulturgeschichte der Verwaltung von Gesundheit und Krankheit. By Lukas Lang. Reviewed by Janka Kovács 240
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Szörnyeteg Felső-Magyarországon: Grünwald Béla és a szlovák–magyar kapcsolatok története [A monster in Upper Hungary: Béla Grünwald and the history of Slovak–Hungarian relations]. By József Demmel. Reviewed by Ágoston Berecz 244
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Geography and Nationalist Visions of Interwar Yugoslavia. By Vedran Duančić. Reviewed by Gábor Demeter 248
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Bécs művészeti élete Ferenc József korában, ahogy Hevesi Lajos látta [Viennese art world in the era of Franz Joseph – seen by Lajos Hevesi]. By Ilona Sármány-Parsons. Reviewed by Ferenc Hörcher 254
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The Soviet Union and Cold War Neutrality and Nonalignment in Europe. Edited by Mark Kramer, Aryo Makko, and Peter Ruggenthaler. Reviewed by Carolien Stolte 258
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Western Europe’s Democratic Age, 1945–1968. By Martin Conway. Reviewed by Péter Apor 262
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Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Estates and Political Culture in the 18th–19th-Century Habsburg Monarchy

András Forgó and István H. Németh Special Editors of the Thematic Issue

Contents

ARTICLES

István H. Németh
Representatives in a Changing World: Characteristics of Urban Advocacy at the Turn of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries 3

Abstract

Abstract

The Kingdom of Hungary had a strong system of estates within the Habsburg Monarchy, and this exerted a significant influence on the positions of free royal cities. The free royal cities enjoyed a large degree of internal autonomy until roughly the end of the seventeenth century, with little oversight or interference by the larger state. Since 1526, the cities had been members of the estates which had taken part in the Diets (the parliaments which could be regarded as the early modern form of the Hungarian), though they had played a minor role in comparison to the counties. In the last third of the seventeenth century, the system of estates underwent significant changes. The royal state came to exert more control, and in the free royal cities, the central administration began to play a stronger role as a force for oversight. The interests of the state administration now played an important role in the selection of the city’s leaders. The delegates who represented the cities in the Diets were also chosen according to these considerations. The local bodies of state administration were given major say in the selection of the representatives. As a consequence of this, delegates began to be chosen who were from different social backgrounds, including people who had different places within the system of the estates. While earlier, the individuals who had been sent to take part in the Diets had been members of the Lutheran bourgeois elite, from roughly the late seventeenth century onwards, members of the nobility living in the cities began to play an increasingly influential role. Many of the delegates from the city of Kassa (today Košice, Slovakia) who will be discussed in the analysis below came from families of non-noble origins which, however, had been granted nobility as a reward for the services they had performed in the chamber administration. The career paths for members of these families led either to administrative bodies in the city or back into state administration.
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Stefan Seitschek
Legitimating Power? Inaugural Ceremonies of Charles VI 35

Abstract

Abstract

The paper focus on the inauguration ceremonies of Charles VI in the Austrian lands. The time span of these inaugurations from 1711 to 1732 and the fact that Charles received the tribute in person is of interest to describe the relationship between the ruler and the estates and the significance of these ceremonies as a whole. The paper will focus especially on the formal oath taking, the confirmation of privileges by the sovereign and where and when these ceremonies took place. For example, were the privileges confirmed in advance of the inauguration ceremony? Were oaths or other forms of affirming the good will of the sovereign like traditional ceremonies (Carinthia) required by the estates? Were there any differences? Who was involved and why were these expansive journeys and ceremonies staged almost two decades after assuming power?
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András Forgó
Rebellious Priests? The Catholic Clergy and the Diet, 1764–1765 73

Abstract

Abstract

The study of the eighteenth-century parliament has intensified in Hungary over the past decade and a half. This tendency is part of a larger European historiographical trend which has revalued the role of the Diets in the study of eighteenth-century political decision-making and political culture. The Hungarian Diet of 1764–1765 is traditionally seen as an outstanding political event in the century, and at the same time as a turning point of the reign of Maria Theresa. After the bitter experiences gained here, she did not convene the estates of Hungary during the remaining fifteen years of her reign, she rather ruled the country by decrees with the help of the institutions of the estates in Hungary. This study is looking for the answer to the question of how the clergy’s opposition to the politics of the court is represented in the sources and how the “change of sides” by the chapter representatives can be grasped in the parliamentary debates.
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Krisztina Kulcsár
With or without Estates? Governorship in Hungary in the Eighteenth Century 96

Abstract

Abstract

In the eighteenth century, the Hungarian estates had the greatest influence among the estates of the provinces of the Habsburg Monarchy. The main representative of the estates was the palatine, appointed by the monarch but elected by the estates at the Diet. He performed substantial judicial, administrative, financial, and military tasks in the Kingdom of Hungary. After 1526, the Habsburg sovereigns opted to rule the country on several occasions through governors who were appointed precisely because of the broad influence of the palatine. In this essay, I examine the reasons why the politically strong Hungarian estates in the eighteenth century accepted the appointment of governors instead of a palatine. I also consider what the rights and duties of these governors were, the extent to which these rights and duties differed from those of the palatine, and what changes they went through in the early modern period. I show how the idea and practice of appointing archdukes as governors or palatines was conceived and evolved at the end of the eighteenth century. The circumstances of these appointments of Francis Stephen of Lorraine, future son-in-law of Charles VI, Prince Albert of Saxony(-Teschen), future son-in-law of Maria Theresa and Archduke Joseph, shed light on considerations and interests which lay in the background of the compromises and political bargains made between the Habsburg(-Lorraine) rulers and the Hungarian estates.
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Tamás Dobszay
The Influence of the Estate System and Power Relations in the Late Feudal Parliament Seating Plan 129

Abstract

Abstract

“We shape our buildings and then they shape us,” Winston Churchill said when the question of rebuilding Westminster and modifying the interior of the House of Commons came up and he expressed his support for preserving the former system. Thus, according to the prime minister, a seating plan both expresses and determines the character and operation of parliamentarism. In light of this interconnection, in this essay I examine the formal characteristics of the late feudal Diet in Hungary between 1790 and 1848, as well as the power relations of the estates and strivings as they found expression within this system.
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BOOK REVIEWS

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Történetírás és történetírók az Árpád-kori Magyarországon (XI–XIII. század közepe) [The writing and writers of history in Árpád-era Hungary, from the eleventh century to the middle of the thirteenth century]. By László Veszprémy. Reviewed by Dániel Bácsatyai 155
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Earthly Delights, Economies and Cultures of Food in Ottoman and Danubian Europe, c. 1500–1900. Edited by Angela Jianu and Violeta Barbu. Reviewed by Karel Černý 160
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Estates and Constitution: The Parliament in Eighteenth-Century Hungary. By István M. Szijártó. Translated by David Robert Evans. Reviewed by Henrik Hőnich 166
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Rampart Nations: Bulwark Myths of East European Multiconfessional Societies in the Age of Nationalism. Edited by Liliya Berezhnaya and Heidi Hein-Kircher. Reviewed by Paul Hanebrink 171
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The Matica and Beyond: Cultural Associations and Nationalism in Europe. Edited by Krisztina Lajosi and Andreas Stynen. Reviewed by Ivan Brlić 174
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Genealogies of Memory 2020 – The Holocaust between Global and Local Perspectives. Conference report. Reviewed by Borbála Klacsmann 178
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Interwar East Central Europe, 1918–1941: The Failure of Democracy-Building, the Fate of Minorities. Edited by Sabrina Ramet. Reviewed by Francesca Rolandi 181
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Alternative Globalizations: Eastern Europe and the Postcolonial World. Edited by James Mark, Artemy M. Kalinovsky, and Steffi Marung. Reviewed by Jun Fujisawa 184
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Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Medicine, Knowledge, and Power: Central European Perspectives

Janka Kovács and Viola Lászlófi Special Editors of the Thematic Issue

Contents

ARTICLES

Gábor Vaderna
Hypochondria as a Poetic Disease: Medicine and Ethics in the Case of an Early Nineteenth-Century Hungarian Poet 189

Abstract

Abstract

Medical knowledge reached a wider range of social strata in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Popular medical books described diseases and how to cure them, and the press regularly addressed the topic of having a healthy body. Meanwhile, representations of the perfect body became an increasingly important problem for neoclassical art. This case study investigates how Dániel Berzsenyi (1776–1836), one of the important Hungarian poets of the early nineteenth century, thought about the human body. For him, the representation of the body was, on the one hand, an artistic problem which raised questions concerning manners of imitation and, on the other hand, an artistic problem which was associated with the display of human virtues and thus with ethical discourse. Berzsenyi gave an account of his illnesses, which can be traced back to hypochondria, in a private letter. His self-analysis has three layers. First, his private letter could be read as part of a sensible epistolary novel. I argue that Berzsenyi introduced himself as a sensible hero, who was ill because of his own uncontrollable emotions. Second, hypochondria has a medical context. Considering the continued influence, in Berzsenyi’s time, of the ancient doctrine of bodily fluids, I demonstrate that this disease may have become a mental illness associated with poets. The reason for this is that the emotions entertained by the sensible man led to the emergence of physical symptoms which were associated with the hardly definable concept of hypochondria. Third, one’s relationship to one’s body could be a moral issue. Berzsenyi attempted to assert his own moral superiority by describing his own illness. Thus, his letter also fit into a moral context of the contemporary theoretical debates in which he was involved. My paper shows how aesthetics, ethics, and medicine were interconnected and how different forms of knowledge circulated between the forums of the arts and other social forums.
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Janka Kovács
Making Sense of Madness: Mental Disorders and the Practices of Case History Writing in the Early Nineteenth Century 211

Abstract

Abstract

The article focuses on interpretations of madness in early nineteenth-century Hungary medical practice from a comparative perspective. By relying on the methodological approach of the anthropology of writing and the analytical considerations offered by Michel Foucault’s 1973–1974 lectures on Psychiatric Power, the article discusses the formalized and standardized practices of case history writing. It draws on sources from the teaching clinics at the universities of Pest and Edinburgh, as well as the largest mental asylums in the Habsburg Monarchy in Vienna (est. 1784) and Prague (est. 1790), and the ideal type of mental asylums at the turn of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the York Retreat (est. 1796). In doing so, an attempt is made to reconstruct both the physicians’ gaze and (to a certain extent) the patients’ view, and by examining the therapeutical regime of each hospital and its correlations with the institutional background, uncover whether madness was perceived as a pathological somatic or psychological state in the medical practice of these institutions. This is in and of itself a fundamental question if we seek to understand changing attitudes towards the mad and their curability in a period of transition from a “world without psychiatry” to a “world of psychiatry,” when specialized care was still not an option for many, especially in the East Central European region.
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Marcel Koschek
TEKA: A Transnational Network of Esperanto-Speaking Physicians 243

Abstract

Abstract

The Tutmonda Esperanta Kuracista Asocio (Worldwide Esperanto Medical Association, TEKA) was founded in 1908 at the Fourth International Esperanto Congress in Dresden and was the international medical association of the Esperanto movement. The aim was to “facilitate practical relations between Esperanto-speaking doctors of all countries.” The interest within the Esperanto movement was immense: after one year, TEKA had more than 400 members all over the world with a focus on Europe; one year later, there were more than 600 members with official representatives in about 100 cities. In Europe, a medical press in Esperanto had already been established. The approach of these journals was both simple and brilliant: the doctors presented the latest medical findings from their home countries in a peer review system and critically examined the articles in their vernacular. This made each issue a compendium of the most important and pioneering findings of national research. The numerous experts also had many other connections with, for example, the Red Cross and similar organizations. Thus, after a short period of time, TEKA brought together the expertise of countless physicians. This paper examines TEKA as a transnational network of experts before World War I. The history of the association and the role of Medicine within the Esperanto movement are briefly discussed. The focus is then on the various association journals and the circulation of knowledge. Finally, the essay offers a look at TEKA’s cooperative endeavors with the Red Cross. It works from a transnational perspective and takes a close view of the actors and their personal backgrounds at appropriate points. Furthermore, lists of members and journal subscribers are provided in map form to make the global spread of the movement within medicine visible.
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Judit Takács, Tamás P. Tóth
Liberating Pathologization? The Historical Background of the 1961 Decriminalization of Homosexuality in Hungary 267

Abstract

Abstract

Analyzing the principles, considerations, and official explanations underpinning the
(de)criminalization of sexual relations between same-sex partners can highlight that around the mid-twentieth century medicalizing references were used in legal and societal judgments on same-sex intimacy in Hungary (and elsewhere). In this study, we want to illustrate the medicalization process of social issues that otherwise seem difficult to “solve” (i.e., these issues, in this case, were put within a psycho-medical ambit) by focusing on a twentieth-century historical example from Hungary. The background of the decriminalization of consensual sexual acts between adult men in the 1961 Hungarian Penal Code will be explored in detail using previously unknown original archival material from 1958. This article will introduce the changes proposed by the Neurology Committee of the Health Science Council (HSC; Egészségügyi Tudományos Tanács) in 1958 leading to the HSC’s unanimous support for a proposal to decriminalize “unnatural fornication” between consenting adults and to the actual decriminalization of homosexuality (i.e., decriminalization of consensual sexual acts between adult men) in 1961. The empirical foundation of the present study includes archival records from the National Archives of Hungary and other primary sources.
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Veronika Lacinová Najmanová
Reproduction between Health and Sickness: Najmanová Doctors’ Attitudes to Reproductive Issues in Interwar Czechoslovakia 301

Abstract

Abstract

issues and related areas of life in an attempt to combat the declining birthrate, a trend that was considered a threat to society. Inspired by Foucault’s concept of medicalization and biopower, through the analysis of medical literature and articles from the press in the interwar period, I will demonstrate how Czechoslovak doctors, not only but especially under the influence of eugenics, foregrounded the categories of health and sickness in order to assert definitions of “correct” forms of reproduction while attempting to stigmatize and discourage forms of reproduction that they considered detrimental to the health of society or the nation. The aim of the study is not only to expand the body of knowledge about the activities and attitudes of Czechoslovak doctors in the interwar period but also to call attention to the still current topic of the political background of reproductive policy.
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Viola Lászlófi
Doctors into Agents: The Technologies of Medical Knowledge and Social Control in State Socialist Hungary 328

Abstract

Abstract

In this paper, I analyze different situations in which the doctor-patient relationship, the knowledge/information produced within this framework, and the practices of medical questioning came to the fore in the work of the state security services, one of the typical institutions of social observation and surveillance of the Hungarian socialist state. I examine work and recruitment dossiers opened from 1956 to the 1980s which document either physicians’ uses in state security observation of information which they gained about their patients during their professional (medical) activities in or in which the physician-patient relationship appears as a context of the physician’s recruitment. I discuss how physicians constructed the patient when the gaze of the state security forces was also arguably part of their medical gaze. I contend that medical knowledge and, more generally, information revealed in the professional (medical) context and used in the framework of network surveillance, taken out of their strict medical context, constituted a gray zone of power. On the one hand, this information was a useful tool with which the regime could exert some measure of effective social and political control beyond the borders of healthcare, while on the other hand, it could help physicians develop a certain degree of social resistance.
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Michael Zok
“To Maintain the Biological Substance of the Polish Nation”: Reproductive Rights as an Area of Conflict in Poland 357

Abstract

Abstract

On October 22, 2020, the long-term dispute about reproductive rights in Polish society had a comeback. The Constitutional Tribunal declared the embryo-pathological indication of abortions guaranteed by the law of 1993 to be unconstitutional. The tribunal’s ruling was met with widespread protests, as it effectively forbade almost all reasons for terminations of pregnancies. While members of the Church’s hierarchy and pro-life activists celebrated, politicians began once again to discuss the law, and different suggestions were made (including a draft law similar to laws in effect in other European countries like Germany, and a law which would allow the termination of a pregnancy if the fetus were likely to die, or a law forbidding them in the case that the fetus had been diagnosed as having down’s syndrome). The debates are hardly new to Polish society and history. On the contrary, they date back to the recreation of the Polish state after World War I. This article concentrates on the developments in the Communist People’s Republic that led to the legislation of 1993, which is commonly referred to as a “compromise.” It focuses on the main actors in this dispute and the policymakers and their arguments. It also contextualizes these discursive strategies in a long-term perspective and highlights continuities and ruptures.
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BOOK REVIEWS

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Egy elfeledett magyar királyi dinasztia: a Szapolyaiak [A forgotten Hungarian royal dynasty: The Szapolyais]. Edited by Pál Fodor and Szabolcs Varga. Reviewed by István Kádas 382
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A Hunyadiak címereslevelei 1447–1489 [The Hunyadi family grants of arms, 1447–1489]. Edited by Anton Avar. Reviewed by Eszter Tarján 386
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Mobilität und Migration in der Frühen Neuzeit. By Márta Fata. Einführungen in die Geschichtswissenschaft. Frühe Neuzeit 1. Reviewed by Gábor Koloh 389
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Crown and Coronation in Hungary 1000–1916 A.D. By János M. Bak and Géza Pálffy. Reviewed by Edina Eszenyi 395
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Empty Signs, Historical Imaginaries: The Entangled Nationalization of Names and Naming in a Late Habsburg Borderland. By Ágoston Berecz. Reviewed by László L. Lajtai 398
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Inventing the Social in Romania, 1848–1914: Networks and Laboratories of Knowledge. By Călin Cotoi. Reviewed by Cosmin Koszor-Codrea 402
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Paramilitarism in the Balkans: Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, and Albania, 1917–1924. By Dmitar Tasić. Reviewed by Filip Lyapov 406
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Manual for Survival: A Chernobyl Guide to the Future. By Kate Brown. Reviewed by Róbert Balogh 409
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Magyar–kínai kapcsolatok 1949–1989 [Sino–Hungarian relations 1949–1989]. By Péter Vámos. Reviewed by Mózes Csoma 413
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Planning Labour: Time and the Foundations of Industrial Socialism in Romania. By Alina-Sandra Cucu. International Studies in Social History 32. Reviewed by Tamar Qeburia 417
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Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Socialist Corporation, 1945–1991

Judit Klement Special Editor of the Thematic Issue

Contents

ARTICLES

Jan Slavíček
From Business to Central Planning: Cooperatives in Czechoslovakia in 1918–1938 and 1948–1960 423

Abstract

Abstract

The paper focuses on cooperatives—seen as business enterprises—in the First Czechoslovak Republic (1918–1938) and the period of 12 years after the communist putsch (1948–1960). It compares the functions of cooperatives, the limits placed on their (semi-)independent business activities, and their chances to decide for themselves in the market economy and the centrally planned economy. Drawing on the methods of business history and economic history, the study seeks to answer the following questions: 1. Were the cooperatives in the First Czechoslovak Republic really fully independent companies running their business on a free market? 2. Were the cooperatives in the Stalinist and early post-Stalinist Czechoslovakia really subordinated subjects in a centrally planned economy? 3. Are there any real connections in the functioning of cooperatives in these two eras? In other words, is it possible that something of the independent cooperatives survived and that the traditional interpretations (according to which the two eras were completely different and even contradictory) can be seen in new and more accurate ways?
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Zsuzsanna Varga
Practices of Creative Disobedience: A Key to Economic Success in Socialism? A Case Study of a Hungarian Agricultural Cooperative 444

Abstract

Abstract

In this article, I examine the fate during the decades of socialism in Hungary of the agricultural company Árpád-Agrár Ltd. of Szentes, which which has flourished up to the present day. Its predecessor, the Árpád Mezőgazdasági Termelőszövetkezet (Agricultural Producer Cooperative), was established in 1960, during the last wave of collectivization. Most members were gardeners who specialized in a Bulgarian type of horticulture.
One of the central questions in my inquiry is how individual gardeners’ best practices were preserved and further developed within the structure of a socialist cooperative. I also consider how the Árpád Cooperative used the economic reforms of 1968 to expand its market-share.
In my analysis of the successful transfer of knowledge and processes of adaptation, I devote particular attention to the human factor, taking into consideration both the changing relationship between the leadership and the membership of the cooperative and the formation of a class of managers who had had experiences in the West and had a more open-minded mentality. These factors offer a possible explanation as to why this agricultural community chose the organizational form of a cooperative at the time of the change of the political regime and was transformed into a public limited liability company only a decade later.
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Zsombor Bódy
Actors, Ruptures, and Continuity. New Socialist Order or Legacy of the War Economy: The Hungarian Vehicle Industry around 1950 466

Abstract

Abstract

This article investigates the formation of a Hungarian socialist enterprise in the vehicle industry. After giving an overview of the legacy of World War II in a (nationalized) vehicle industry plant, it explores political, production, and wage conflicts on the basis of company and party archives and considers the kinds of resources which workers and engineers could use in their efforts to assert their interests. It also considers how these efforts limited the abilities of the central economic authorities to exert influence. It arrives at the conclusion that the main features of the early socialist enterprises, such as technology, the structure of the skilled workforce, the attitudes of this workforce, etc., were shaped by the industrial boost which had come with the war. Furthermore, the relationship between workers and firms was itself shaped by the shortage of consumer goods during and after the war, because the supply of consumer goods (above all, food) was considered the responsibility of the enterprises. These circumstances set narrow limits within which the central economic administration had to operate in is efforts to create so-called socialist enterprises. So, the early socialist enterprise seems to have had few genuinely socialist elements. It was shaped far more by the prevailing conditions in the postwar context, networks among engineers, and a sense of solidarity among skilled workers which had been inherited from the pre-socialist era.
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Olha Korniienko
Ukrainian Fashion Houses as Centers of Soviet Fashion Representation 495

Abstract

Abstract

The study examines Soviet fashion houses as fashion corporations with an extensive structure and a certain autonomy which served as centers for the development and representation of Soviet fashion. These state institutions were created in the capitals and large cities of the Soviet republics. The Moscow All-Union Fashion House acted as a methodological center for fashion houses of all Soviet republics. The Ukrainian SSR was one of the important centers of fashion development in the Soviet Union, and it included six general orientation and five specialized fashion houses, as well as the Ukrainian Institute of Assortment of Light Industry Products and Clothing Culture. Based on a wide range of archival sources and interviews with fashion house workers, the article reveals the structure and operation of Ukrainian fashion houses in the period between 1940 and 1991 and also examine their cooperative endeavors with garment enterprises and research institutions. The technology of clothing production by designers, the processes of approval to which these technologies were subjected by art councils, and the organization of exhibitions in the USSR and abroad are also considered.
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Jan Štemberk – Ivan Jakubec
The Czechoslovak Capital of West Germany: The Story of Peute Reederei 529

Abstract

Abstract

There are numerous interesting topics pertaining to the economy of socialist Czechoslovakia that have not received sufficient attention in the secondary literature. One of these topics is the question of the capital penetration of socialist enterprises into Western (capitalist) Europe. In this essay, we examine the circumstances of the establishment and subsequent activities of the Peute Reederei company, which had both Czechoslovak and West German capital participation, based on a company archive which, however, has survived only in fragments. The company was established under West German law and had its headquarters in West Germany. Data on Peute Reederei were drawn from available unpublished and published archival materials, period and professional literature, and journalism, but we would above all like to express our gratitude to the private family archive of Mr. Rudolf Hurt (Hurt Archive), which provided the authors with archival materials concerning the Hamburg branch of the Czechoslovak Elbe-Oder Shipping Company.
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Zarko Lazarevic
Foreign Investments and Socialist Enterprise in Slovenia (Yugoslavia): The Case of the Kolektor Company 556

Abstract

Abstract

In this article, I examine foreign investment in the socialist enterprise in the former Yugoslavia based on the case study of Kolektor in the context of the liberalized communist social and economic order. Foreign investments were allowed in the form of joint ventures. I present these investments from the viewpoint of economic reforms, the concept of socialist enterprise, and the concept of economic development, which enabled foreign investments and shaped regulation and the structure of foreign investments in Yugoslavia. The history of the case of Kolektor began at a time when Slovenia still belonged to the former Yugoslavia, which was arguably a liberalized type of communist economic system. This was during the Cold War, when both Europe and the rest of the world were divided essentially along the lines of the communist east and the capitalist west. The Kolektor Company was established in 1963 as a state socialist enterprise for the manufacture of the rotary electrical switches known as commutators. From the outset, the company tried to establish international cooperation to acquire modern technology. In 1968, it reached an agreement with the West German Company Kautt & Bux, which at the time was the technological and market leader in the production of commutators. Kautt & Bux invested in Kolektor and became an owner of 49 percent of the company. The investment proved very profitable for both partners. The Slovenian side got access to modern technology and expertise, and the German side got additional production facilities, skilled workers, and low-cost production, which increased its competitiveness on international markets.
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BOOK REVIEWS

Hungary and the Hungarians: Western Europe’s View in the Middle Ages.By Enikő Csukovits. Reviewed by Lesław Spychała. 581

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Esterházy Pál és Esterházy Orsolya levelezése [The correspondence between Pál Esterházy and Orsolya Esterházy]. Edited by Noémi Viskolcz and Edina Zvara. Reviewed by Emőke Rita Szilágyi. 588
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Cameralism and Enlightenment: Happiness, Governance and Reform in Transnational Perspective. Edited by Ere Nokkala and Nicholas B. Miller. Reviewed by Tibor Bodnár-Király. 592
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Roma Voices in History: A Sourcebook; Roma Civic Emancipation in Central, South-Eastern and Eastern Europe from the 19th Century until World War II. Edited by Elena Marushiakova and Vesselin Popov. Reviewed by Eszter György. 598
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The Lost World of Socialists at Europe’s Margins: Imagining Utopia, 1870s–1920s. By Maria Todorova. Reviewed by Victor Petrov. 601
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Imagining Bosnian Muslims in Central Europe, Representations, Transfers and Exchanges. Edited by František Šístek. Reviewed by Mátyás Erdélyi. 604
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Women and Politics: Nationalism and Femininity in Interwar Hungary. By Balázs Sipos. Reviewed by Dóra Czeferner. 607
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“Glaube an den Menschen” [Faith in humanity: A diary from Bergen-Belsen]. By Jenő Kolb. Edited by Thomas Rahe and Lajos Fischer. “Hit az emberben”. Bergen-belseni napló. [Faith in humanity. A diary from Bergen-Belsen]. By Jenő Kolb. Edited by Thomas Rahe and Lajos Fischer. Reviewed by András Szécsényi. 610
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The Legacy of Division: East and West after 1989. Edited by Ferenc Laczó and Luka Lisjak Gabrijelčič. Reviewed by Petra Guasti. 614
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Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Interdependencies

Contents

ARTICLES

Bence Péterfi
Multiple Loyalties in Habsburg-Hungarian Relations at the Turn of the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Century 621

Abstract

Abstract

In this essay, I examine how people with business and political interest on both sides of Austrian–Hungarian border, sometimes even in royal courts, could survive in spite of the rather capricious relationship between Hungarian kings and Habsburg rulers in the second half of the fifteenth century and the early sixteenth century. Most of them sought a solution that would enable them to keep the estates and the positions they had already acquired. This “double loyalty” was practically impossible in the midst of the war between Matthias Corvinus and Frederick III, Holy Roman emperor: very few of the figures in question managed to maintain attachments to both sides. A window of opportunity opened with the Peace of Pressburg in 1491, when the two parties recognized the possibility of service in the neighboring ruler’s service. Although the peace treaty did not alter the significant shrinking of the camp supporting the Habsburg claim to the throne, which had been relatively large in the time of the 1490–91 Austro-Hungarian War, from the 1490s on and in strikingly large numbers from the mid-1510s, more and more people could be found whose activities made plainly clear that they were not exclusive in their loyalties: they were quite able to serve two masters at the same time.
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Réka Újlaki-Nagy
Faith, Scripture, and Reason: The Debate between Transylvanian Sabbatarians and Christian Francken 653

Abstract

Abstract

In this study, I present two Sabbatarian texts which were written in response to texts by Christian Francken. Based on the argumentation in the Sabbatarian texts, I try to clarify which writings by the German philosopher they were responding to. I offer an explanation of the ferocity of the Sabbatarian response, and I clarify the reasons why the Sabbatarians found it so important to respond to Francken’s ideas. My analysis of the Sabbatarian texts shows persuasively that Francken’s attacks were related to the basic and specific teachings of the Sabbatarians. The challenge presented by fashionable philosophical trends at the time compelled the Sabbatarians to face not only the benefits but also the dangers of following the ratio in the interpretation of Scripture. Sabbatarian texts arrived at a solution (by drawing a distinction between the concepts of ratio and philosophy) which, although formulated earlier in the established churches, was still undeveloped in the Transylvanian Antitrinitarian movement out of which Sabbatarianism grew.
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Béla Vilmos Mihalik
The Making of a Catholic Parish in Eighteenth-Century Hungary: Competing Interests, Integration, and Interference 675

Abstract

Abstract

In this essay the potentials for political interaction among local communities will be examined through parish organization in the century following the expulsion of the Ottomans from the territory of Hungary, i.e. the period referred to as late confessionalization (1681–1781). Roughly 150 years of Ottoman occupation had wreaked havoc on the parish network, which was reorganized over the course of the eighteenth century. Village communities took the initiative to establish parishes, but as they did so, the clashing interests of the Catholic Church, the landlords, and the state had to be addressed and negotiated. The dynamics of this process and the ways in which the local communities were able to assert their specific needs should therefore be discussed. The complexity of often divergent interests and aims compelled the communities to devise cautious means of communicating with the competing groups, and it also helped further the internal integration of the local societies and the integration of these communities into church and secular structures. However, growing state influence made abundantly clear that the roles of the church administration and the parishes would soon undergo slow but meaningful change.
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Veronika Eszik
A Small Town’s Quest for Modernity in the Shadow of the Big City: The Case of Senj and Fiume 706

Abstract

Abstract

Most of the theories concerning modernization and a number of trends in the historiography treat the big city as the most important arena of modernization, an arena which, thanks to our grasp of an array of social and economic transformations, can be made the ideal subject of studies on the processes and consequences of modernization. From this perspective, the small town becomes a kind of abstraction for backwardness, failed attempts to catch up, or a community that simply has remained unaffected by modernization. Thus, the study of the dynamics of modernization in smaller urban settlements from a new perspective which attributes genuine agency to them may well offer new findings and insights. In the historiography concerning the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, the recent imperial turn has shown a perfectly natural interest in the peripheries of the empire, as it has striven to untangle the intertwining strands of local, regional, national, and imperial loyalties found there. The research on which this article is based, which focuses on Senj (Zengg), a small seaside Croatian city, is shaped by this dual interest. Senj’s resistance and adaptation to top-down initiatives of modernization can be captured through its conflict with the city of Fiume (today Rijeka, Croatia), which is not far from Senj and which before World War I belonged to Hungary. In this story, Fiume represents the “mainstream” manner of big-city modernization: it became the tenth most active port city in Europe over the course of a few decades. The area surrounding the city, however, was not able to keep up with this rapid pace of development. In this article, I present the distinctive program for modernization adopted by the elites of Senj, as well as their critique of modernization. Furthermore, the history of the city towards the end of the nineteenth century sheds light on the interdependencies among the cities of Austria–Hungary, interdependencies which were independent of legal or administrative borders. By analyzing relations between Senj and Fiume, I seek to offer a nuanced interpretation of the conflict between the two cities, which tends to be portrayed simply as a consequence of national antagonisms.
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Tamás Révész
Soldiers in the Revolution: Violence and Consolidation in 1918 in the Territory of the Disintegrating Kingdom of Hungary 737

Abstract

Abstract

In November 1918, as in other countries in Central and Eastern Europe, a large wave of violence swept across the territory of the crumbling Kingdom of Hungary. Soldiers returning from the fronts played a key role in the acts of looting that were committed everywhere. At the same time, many of the soldiers joined the various paramilitary policing units that were being formed. In the traditional historiography, one finds essentially two attempts to explain the behavior of these soldiers. Left-leaning interpretations have tended to characterize the events as precursors to an early agrarian socialist revolution, while more nationalistic interpretations have seen them as the first steps in a national revolution. Drawing on archival sources which until now have remained unused, this essay discusses the background and motivations of the soldiers involved in the looting. It then analyses the circumstances surrounding the formation of law enforcement guard forces and the motivations of those who joined these forces.
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José Miguel Sardica
Political Readings of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution in Portugal 768

Abstract

Abstract

The 1956 Hungarian revolution had a resonant echo in Western Europe, gaining large attention and media coverage. This article explores how the small, peripheral Atlantic country of Portugal, on the other side of the European continent (Lisbon lies more than 3,000 kilometers from Budapest), which was under the rightwing conservative dictatorship of António de Oliveira Salazar’s New State at the time, became interested in the Hungarian events, allowing them to be written about in the most influential newspapers. The article begins with a discussion of the basic context of the Hungarian revolution of 1956 and of the Portuguese political context in the mid-1950s (the Salazarist regime and the bulk of the oppositional forces) and then offers an analysis of articles found in seven important Portuguese newspapers. Essentially, it presents a survey of the coverage of the Hungarian Revolution in the Portuguese press and explores how those events were interpreted and how they had an impact on the ideological readings and positions of the government, the moderate opposition, and the radical opposition of the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP).
The 1956 revolution merited extensive coverage in the Portuguese papers, with titles, pictures, and news boxes on the front pages sometimes continuing into the next pages of a given paper or on the last page. The stories were narrated, for most part, in a lively, fluid, sentimental, and apologetic language. The New State in particular, but also moderate publications which were oppositional to Salazar, endorsed the Budapest revolutionaries and criticized and denounced orthodox communism in the form of Soviet repression, either in the name of Christendom, national independence, and the Western European safeguard against communism (in the case of Salazarism), or in the name (and hope) of a democratic surge, which would usher in strident calls for civil liberties (in the case of oppositional voices). With the exception of the press organ which voiced the official position of the Portuguese Communist Party, supporting the Soviet response against the Hungarian insurgents (and thus was in sharp contrast with the larger share of public opinion), there was a rare convergence, despite nuances in the language, in the images, narratives, messages, and general tone of the articles in the various organs of the Portuguese press, which tended to show compassion and support for the insurgents in Budapest because their actions targeted communism and tended to decry the final bloody repression, which exposed the Soviet Union as a murderous regime.
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BOOK REVIEWS

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Vrijeme sazrijevanja, vrijeme razaranja: Hrvatske zemlje u kasnome srednjem vijeku [Time of development, time of destruction: Croatian lands in the late Middle Ages]. Edited by Marija Karbić. Reviewed by Judit Gál 800

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Dalmatia and the Exercise of Royal Authority in the Árpád-Era Kingdom of Hungary. By Judit Gál. Reviewed by Mirko Sardelić 803

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Katonabárók és hivatalnok grófok: Új arisztokraták a 18. századi Magyarországon [Soldier barons and office-holder counts: New aristocrats in eighteenth-century Hungary]. By Tamás Szemethy. Reviewed by Ágoston Nagy 806

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A Mighty Capital Under Threat: The Environmental History of London, 1800–2000. Edited by Bill Luckin and Peter Thorsheim. Reviewed by Ágnes Németh 812

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Vielfalt ordnen: Das föderale Europa der Habsburgermonarchie (Vormärz bis 1918). By Jana Osterkamp. Reviewed by Péter Techet 816

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Milan Rastislav Štefánik: The Slovak National Hero and Co-Founder of Czechoslovakia. By Michal Kšiňan. Reviewed by József Demmel 819

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The Hungarian Agricultural Miracle? Sovietization and Americanization in a Communist Country. By Zsuzsanna Varga. Translated by Frank T. Zsigó. Reviewed by Ernst Langthaler 823

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Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Early Humanism in Hungary and in East Central Europe

Farkas Gábor Kiss Special Editor of the Thematic Issue

Contents

Articles

Farkas Gábor Kiss
Origin Narratives: Pier Paolo Vergerio and the Beginnings of Hungarian Humanism 471

Abstract

Abstract

Earlier studies have attributed a pivotal role to Pier Paolo Vergerio Sr in transmitting the fundamental ideas of humanism to the writer Johannes (Vitéz) of Zredna, the first acolyte of Renaissance humanism in Hungary. This paper investigates the possible contacts between Pier Paolo Vergerio Sr and Johannes of Zredna, mapping the channels through which Johannes of Zredna first encountered humanist rhetoric. Whereas many of these possible connections turned out to be historical fictions that proved to be untenable in the form they are described in later historiography, there seems to be a genuine core to the embellished stories. I argue that his direct use of Italian early humanist texts (Guarino’s translation of Plutarch, Gasparino Barzizza’s letters) and an avid reading of Livy’s historical work (witnessed by the ms. Cod. 3099 of the Austrian National Library) are the earliest testimonies of his humanistic interests.
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Attila Tuhári
Catullus on a Coat-of-Arms: A Pictorial Paraphrase of Catull. 11 from Late Medieval Hungary 497

Abstract

Abstract

The paper discusses the coat-of-arms of Mathias of Szente (or of Sáró) granted by Ladislaus V in 1456, the depiction of which includes–in my opinion–a pictorial paraphrase of a Catullian metaphor. This could offer a more satisfactory, but unusual answer to the emerging problems regarding the interpretation of the composition. The study attempts to reveal how Catullus’ poem could reach Mathias of Szente, as well as the possible connotations it might have awaken on a broader range of the society.
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Dániel Pócs
The Codices of György Handó 508

Abstract

Abstract

The Florentine bookseller and cartolaio Vespasiano da Bisticci included the life of three Hungarian prelates in his Vite, dedicated to the the lives of his most famous clients. Two of the Hungarians, the archbishop of Esztergom, János Vitéz of Zredna, and the bishop of Pécs, the poet Janus Pannonius, are well-known personalities of early humanism in Hungary and some of their codices prepared in Florence still exist. The third one, however, György Handó (c. 1430–1480), provost of Pécs cathedral chapter from 1465 until his death, is much less known. Scholars of early humanism in Hungary were unable to contextualize the information given by Bisticci on Handó’s library, because no other written source could confirm his accounts, and no manuscript could been identified as a Handó codex. The present study demonstrates that contrary to the common belief that his codices had been completely lost, there are, in fact, twenty manuscripts originating from this early humanistic library. This research result is based on the identification of his coat of arms.
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Dávid Molnár
“Many laughed at the thought of this illustrious young man reading books:” About Miklós Báthory’s Library and His Cicero-Codex 573

Abstract

Abstract

This paper pursues an anecdote of Galeotto Marzio about the erudite Miklós Báthory, bishop of Vác, who read Cicero’s Tusculan disputation while he was waiting with other noblemen for the royal diet in Rákosmező, and the mocking attitude of the Hungarian political elite toward any intellectual endeavor. The traces lead to the National Széchényi Library in Budapest which has in its holdings a manuscript of Cicero under Cod. lat. 150. This book might have been in the hands of Báthory at Rákosmező. The purpose of this paper is to confirm the scarcely known plans of Miklós Báthory, bishop of Vác, to found a Platonic school on the basis of what little remains of his library and, mainly, the notes of his Cicero codex. This information perfectly harmonizes with his well-known aspirations to found a Platonic school in Buda and later his gymnasium in Vác, which seems to have been permeated with a kind of Platonist spirituality. After a summary of the life of Miklós Báthory, the paper offers an outline of the remains of his once rich library and then finally an examination of the history of the Cicero codex and its marginalia.
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Gábor Almási
The Work Ethic in Humanist Biographies: The Case of Willem Canter 594

Abstract

Abstract

This article is a case study of the work ethic as represented in biographies of humanists. It draws first and foremost on Melchior Adam’s anthology of biographies of learned “German” men of 1615–1620. The analysis of some of the longer biographies reveals that Adam was more dependent on his sources than previous research supposed. Moreover, the stress on the education and diligence of the individuals in several of the biographies follows not from Adam’s interests, but rather from the logic of humanist biographies, a primary function of which was to legitimate social rise, redefine social values according to meritocratic principles, and promote the Renaissance ideology of virtue. The vita of William Canter, which I analyze in considerable detail, illustrates how early modern biographies tended to construct the self on the basis of ancient and more recent clichés and to present ideal types. The work ethic represented by Canter’s scholarly persona reveals that hard work in the Renaissance was intrinsically linked to disciplined time-management.
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Book Reviews

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Trust, Authority, and the Written Word in the Royal Towns of Medieval Hungary. By Katalin Szende. Reviewed by Agnieszka Bartoszewicz 620

Confraternity, Mendicant Orders, and Salvation in the Middle Ages: The Contribution of the Hungarian Sources (c. 1270–c. 1530). By Marie-Madeleine de Cevins. Reviewed by Eszter Konrád 623

The Árpáds and Their Wives: Queenship in Early Medieval Hungary 1000–1301. By Attila Zsoldos. Reviewed by Christopher Mielke 626

Die Hungarica Sammlung der Franckeschen Stiftungen zu Halle: Herausgegeben von Brigitte Klosterberg und István Monok. Alte Drucke 1495–1800, Bd. I. A–O, Bd. II. P–Z. Bearbeitet von Attila Verók. Reviewed by Dorottya Piroska B. Székely 629

Matézis, mechanika, metafizika: A 18–19. századi matematika, fizika és csillagászat eredményeinek reprezentációja a filozófiában és az irodalomban [Mathesis, mechanics, metaphysics: The representation of findings in mathematics, physics, and astronomy in philosophy and literature in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries]. Edited by Dezső Gurka. Reviewed by Tibor Bodnár-Király 632

National Indifference and the History of Nationalism in Modern Europe. Edited by Maarten Van Ginderachter and Jon Fox. Reviewed by Ágoston Berecz 636

Wirtschaftsnationalismus lokal: Interaktion und Abgrezung zwischen rumänischen und sächsischen Gewerbeorganisationen in den siebenbürgischen Zentren Hermannstadt und Kronstadt, 1868–1914. By Stéphanie Danneberg. Reviewed by Gábor Egry 639

Metropolitan Belgrade: Culture and Class in Interwar Yugoslavia. By Jovana Babović. Reviewed by John Paul Newman 642

Austrian Reconstruction and the Collapse of Global Finance 1921−1931. By Nathan, Marcus. Reviewed by Ágnes Pogány 645

History and Belonging: Representations of the Past in Contemporary European Politics. Edited by Stefan Berger and Caner Tekin. Reviewed by Orsolya Anna Sudár 649

Planning in Cold War Europe: Competition, Cooperation, Circulations (1950s–1970s). Edited by Michel Christian, Sandrine Kott, and Ondřej Matějka. Reviewed by Voicu Ion Sucală 652

Notes on Contributors

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Volume 7 Issue 4

Stepfamilies across Ethnicities

Gabriella Erdélyi Special Editor of the Thematic Issue

Contents

Introduction

Gabriella Erdélyi
Differences between Western and East Central European Patterns of Remarriage and Their Consequences for Children Living in Stepfamilies 657
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Articles

Almut Bues
Dynasty as a Patchwork House, or the (Evil) Stepmother: The Example of Zofia Jagiellonka 669

Abstract

Abstract

The significant age difference between Princess Zofia Jagiellonka and her husband had as one advantage for the princess that she had no competitors within her age group (e.g. a stepmother). Moreover, her stepdaughters were approximately the same age and, after her husband’s death, she found herself in similar circumstances to the as a widow. Zofia Jagiellonka eventually resolved the long-standing relationship between her husband and his mistress, knowing in this regard how to defend her social position. She consciously took up the role of mediator among the relatives, and she had a mitigating effect on the tensions between father and son. Her social consciousness included providing for the welfare of the new family by meeting the expectations placed on her with regards to her stepchildren. Her life was not that of the stereotypical “evil stepmother.” Rather, she was someone from whom her stepchildren and others repeatedly sought counsel. Through her royal birth, she was (with regard to her social status) superior to her Guelph relatives, and she had the king—her brother—as her protector. In terms of her relationship to her stepchildren, it was perhaps a great advantage that she herself bore no children, and thus there was no competitive milieu at the court in Wolfenbüttel.
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Andrea Fehér
Noble Lineage as Stepfamily Network: An Eighteenth-Century Noble Autobiography from the Principality of Transylvania 695

Abstract

Abstract

In this essay, I examine how an eighteenth-century Transylvanian nobleman constructed the meanings of kinship and family relations. The investigation primarily draws on the autobiographical work of László Székely (1716–1772), an educated and sensitive Transylvanian nobleman, who recorded the brief history of his family and himself. Being orphaned at a young age the author made his way out in life without the help of his biological parents, with the advice and support of his extended family: guardians, blood relatives, brothers-in-law; and other personal connections, such as servants, former colleagues, and friends. Due to the detailed description of his lineage and his constant preoccupation to record the major family events the present article offers an exhaustive study of the emotional bonds and kinship ties between some of the most important noble families from Transylvania.
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Kinga Papp
Dávid Rozsnyai’s “Orphans”: A Stepfamily through Divorce in Seventeenth-Century Transylvania 726

Abstract

Abstract

My paper examines the documents pertaining to the life of a stepfamily made through divorce in seventeenth-century Transylvania. The focus is on the interfamilial relationships before and after the divorce. I examine the ways in which the attitude of the father, Dávid Rozsnyai, toward his first wife and children changed during the divorce and after formation of a new family. I also consider how the appearance of the new family members (second wife, half-siblings) affected the equilibrium within the family. My analysis shows that in Early Modern Transylvania there were social and personal customs involving the assignment of social positions to both adult and child members of a family broken by divorce, which facilitated the integration of these families into the community. The scattered family documents and witness hearings show that the divorced father ensured, through his testament and other documents, that the two sons from the two different marriages would share inherited wealth equally. In their turn, the stepbrothers worked together to pay off their father’s debts.
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Katalin Simon
Remarriage Patterns and Stepfamily Formation in a German-speaking Market Town in Eighteenth-Century Hungary 757

Abstract

Abstract

First, this study addresses issues related to the gendered patterns of remarriage in an eighteenth-century market town. Second, it investigates interpersonal relationships in the new family formations, including stepparents and stepchildren. When and why did widows and widowers choose to remarry? How did new marriages effect the lives of children born into earlier marriages? Drawing on several kinds of archival sources, such as marriage contracts, council protocols, court and parish records, the paper provides an in-depth case study, which by tracking multiple marriages and children of both spouses shows the complexity of the blended families which came into existence through the remarriage of spouses.
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Eleonóra Géra
“Mulier Imperiosa”: The Stepfamilies of Eva Elisabetha in Buda in the First Half of the Eighteenth Century 789

Abstract

Abstract

This article offers a case study based on examination of legal documents concerning the marital conflicts which arose in the three consecutive marriages of a wealthy burgher woman. It situates this specific case in the context of Early Modern gendered marriage patterns. The documents which were produced in the course of the judicial dissolution of the first marriage described the young wife as a slave to her elderly, tyrannical husband. Other sources, however, including documents pertaining to her second two marriages, suggest that it would be misleading to argue, on the basis of the documents generated in the course of her divorce, the wife completely adapted herself to the patriarchal norms of her age. As her later marriages and economic successes show, she was not at all a helpless woman, though she could pretend to be one when this role served her interests. Her case suggests that the patriarchal model transmitted by the normative literature of the age could be successfully challenged, and ambitious, capable women, who had good financial and family backgrounds, had were able at least to some extent to negotiate relationships actively and challenge cultural norms. The documents concerning her second and third marriages add novel information to the study of the relationships between stepsiblings and halfsiblings. This case study highlights, moreover, the ways wedded women and widows could rely at times on the support of their families of origin
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Sándor Nagy
Family Formation, Ethnicity, Divorce, and Marriage Law: Jewish Divorces in Hungary, 1786–1914 812

Abstract

Abstract

The role of broken marriages in the formation of “modern” patchwork families is well known, but if one tries to examine its historical roots, one encounters the problem of defining divorce and–despite the expansion of civil law–the differences in perceptions of divorce according to Church denominations. This study aims to consider the above mentioned difficulties in light of the development of Hungarian marriage law and the problem of Jewish divorces.
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Book Reviews

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The Economy of Medieval Hungary. Edited by József Laszlovszky, Balázs Nagy, Péter Szabó, and András Vadas. East Central and Eastern Europe in the Middle Ages, 450–1450 49. Reviewed by Christoph Sonnlechner 843

Das Wiener Fürstentreffen von 1515: Beiträge zur Geschichte der Habsburgisch-Jagiellonischen Doppelvermählung. Edited by Bogusław Dybaś and István Tringli. Reviewed by Katarzyna Niemczyk 846

Život u srednjovjekovnom Splitu: Svakodnevica obrtnika u 14. i 15. stoljeću [Life in Medieval Split: Everyday Life of Craftsmen in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries]. By Tonija Andrić. Biblioteka Hrvatska povjesnica, Monografije i studije, III/79. Reviewed by Zrinka Nikolić Jakus 849

Erdélyi országgyűlések a 16–17. században [Transylvanian Assemblies in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries]. By Teréz Oborni. Reviewed by János Nagy 853

Házasság Budán: Családtörténetek a török kiűzése után újjászülető (fő)városból 1686–1726 [Marriage in Buda: Family Histories in the (Capital) City Reborn After the Expulsion of the Turks]. By Eleonóra Géra. Reviewed by Lilla Krász 857

Egy tudós hazafi Bécsben: Görög Demeter és könyvtára [A Learned Patriot in Vienna: Demeter Görög and His Library]. By Edina Zvara. Reviewed by Attila Verók 861

Landscapes of Disease: Malaria in Modern Greece. By Katerina Gardikas. Reviewed by Róbert Balogh 864

A Contested Borderland: Competing Russian and Romanian Visions of Bessarabia in the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century. By Andrei Cuşco. Reviewed by Ágoston Berecz 867

Embers of Empire: Continuity and Rupture in the Habsburg Successor States after 1918. Edited by Paul Miller and Claire Morelon. Reviewed by Florian Kührer-Wielach 870

Social Sciences in the Other Europe Since 1945. Edited by Adela Hîncu and Victor Karady. Reviewed by Réka Krizmanics 874

Vanguard of the Revolution: The Global Idea of the Communist Party. By A. James McAdams. Reviewed by Tom Junes 878

Notes on Contributors

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