Simmel’s Reception in Hungarian Sociology Before 1960

The study gives an overview of how Georg Simmel was received in Hungary before 1960, focusing primarily on his position and role within Hungarian sociology. Simmel continuously published between 1893 and 1912 and – with minor interruptions – also held courses in sociology at the University of Berlin, where he made a considerable impact on many Hungarian students, in particular Gyorgy Lukacs, Bela Balazs and later on Karoly Mannheim. Although Simmel was known among the readers of the journal Twentieth Century (Huszadik Század) right from the beginning (for example, Simmel’s mentality can be strongly felt in Lukacs’s early writings published in Hungary, including in Twentieth Century) the approach he represented was not able to break through in Hungarian sociology workshops before the 1970s. I believe this was mainly due to the relationship between those knowing Simmel’s theory and those representing Hungarian sociology, whereas yet another reason could well be sociology’s position in Hungary, its transformation as well as the difficulties it had to face in terms of legitimacy, the presentation of which – in the context of Simmel’s reception in Hungary – is the objective of this paper.

Released: Replika 112, 97–112.