What is Hungarian now?

A Reply to Miklós Hadas

The following article reflects on the ideas that appeared in Miklós Hadas’s essay, available in Replika Journal (No. 105). Hadas’ essay forces us to re-evaluate some of the generally respected ideas in Hungarian culture and their actuality. On the one hand, the practice of drawing a contrast between the imagined glorious past and the present state of affairs (Berzsenyi, Kölcsey, Vörösmarty), and on the other hand the tradition of referring to the future only through obscure allusions, which leaves us in the hand of a fateful fortune (Faludi, Berzsenyi). The author of this paper suggests that a guarantee for the success of rebuilding the Hungarian society is to expand the political scope of action. Experiencing diversity will help breaking through the wall of indifference and will energise those who are involved in a process of community building. The ideals and institutions of a civic society currently seem to us as a utopia. However, it is still noteworthy to state, that in case of an emergence of new structures of civic society and democratic republic, these structures themselves would also show elements of opportunism.


Released: Replika 106–107, 293–300.