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A Journey through the Vanishing World of the Transylvanian Aristocracy
In the darkness of the early morning of 3 March 1949, practically all of the Transylvanian aristocracy were arrested in their beds and loaded into lorries. Under the terror of Gheorghiu-Dej and later Ceaușescu the aristocracy led a double life: during the day they worked in quarries, steelworks and carpenters’ yards; in the evening they secretly gathered and maintained the rituals of an older world. To record this episode of recent history, Jaap Scholten travelled extensively in Romania and Hungary and sought out the few remaining aristocrats who survived communism and met the youngest generation of the once distinguished aristocracy to talk about the restitution of assets and about the future.
Robert K. Merton and the Future of Sociology
Offers a comprehensive perspective on knowledge production in the field of sociology. Moreover, it is a tribute to the scope of Merton's work and the influence Merton has had on the work and life of sociologists around the world. This is reflected in each of the 12 chapters by internationally acclaimed scholars witnessing the range of fields Merton has contributed to as well as the personal impact he has had on sociologists. This approach is in itself a tribute to Merton: an analysis of knowledge production through a contextualized review of an author's life-work – a quintessentially “Mertonian” enterprise.
The fifty years or so preceding the watershed of 1848–49 witnessed the emergence of liberal nationalism in Hungary, along with a transmutation of conservatism which appeared then as a party and an ideological system in the political arena. The specific features of the conservatism, combining the protection of the status quo with some reform measures, its strategic vision, conceptual system, argumentation, assessment criteria and values require an in depth exploration and analysis. Different conservative groups were in the background or in opposition from 1848 to 1918, while in the period between the two World Wars, they constituted the overwhelming majority of ruling parties. During the one-party system, from 1949 to 1989, the liberals and conservatives—like all other political groups—were illegal, a status from which they could later emerge upon the change of the political system. The inheritance of the autocratic system frozen up and undigested by the one-party state was thawed after the peaceful regime change, the constitutional revolution and its discrete components began to be reactivated, including the enemy images of earlier discourses. “Liberal” and “conservative” had become state-party stigmas in line with fascist, reactionary, rightist, and bourgeois. In reaction to that, at first conservative then liberal, intellectual fashions and renascences unfolded in the 1980s. The attempts by liberal and conservative advocates to find predecessors did not favor an objective approach. The first step toward objectivity is establishing distance from the different kinds of enemy images and their political idioms. This is a pressing need because, although several pioneering works have appeared on different variants of the Hungarian liberalisms and conservatisms, there are no serious unbiased syntheses. This work is urgent because the political poles of the constitutional revolution and the ensuing period have up till now been described in terms of different conspiracy theories.
Constitutional Democracy addresses the widely held belief that liberal democracy embodies an uneasy compromise of incompatible values: those of liberal rights on the one hand, and democratic equality on the other. Liberalism is said to compromise democracy, while democracy is said to endanger the values of liberalism. It is these theses that János Kis examines and tries to refute. Making the assumption that the alleged conflict is to be resolved at the level of institutions, he outlines a new theory of constitutional democracy. A wide range of problems encountered in constitutional democracy are discussed, such as the popular vote, popular sovereignty, and non-elected justices. The volume is composed of three parts. Part One, "Public Good and Civic Virtue", revisits the debate between liberals and democrats on how to interpret the democratic vote. In Part Two, "Liberal Democracy", the author proves that on the level of principles there is no incompatibility between liberalism and democracy and that liberal theory can demonstrate that democratic values follow from fundamental liberal values. In Part Three, "Constitutional Adjudication in a Democracy", the compatibility of democracy and judicial or constitutional review is analyzed and a theory of constitutionalism is outlined.
Historical Narratives in Constitutional Adjudication
Emphasizes the role history and historical narratives play in constitutional adjudication. Uitz provocatively draws attention to the often-tense relationship between the constitution and historical precedence highlighting the interpretive and normative nature of the law. Her work seeks to understand the conditions under which references to the past, history and traditions are attractive to lawyers, even when they have the potential of perpetuating indeterminacy in constitutional reasoning. Uitz conclusively argues that this constitutional indeterminacy is obscured by 'judicial rhetorical toolkits' of continuity and reconciliation that allow the court's reliance on the past to be unaccounted for. Uitz' rigorous analysis and extensive research makes this work an asset to legal scholars and practitioners alike.
The Roma Issue in Hungary from 1945 to 2015
The volume presents the changing situation of the Roma in the second half of the 20th century and examines the politics of the Hungarian state regarding minorities by analyzing legal regulations, policy documents, archival sources and sociological surveys. In the first phase analyzed (1945-61), the authors show the efforts of forced assimilation by the communist state. The second phase (1961-89) began with the party resolution denying nationality status to the Roma. Gypsy culture was equivalent with culture of poverty that must be eliminated. Forced assimilation through labor activities continued. The Roma adapted to new conditions and yet kept their distinct identity. From the 1970s, Roma intellectuals began an emancipatory movement, and its legacy is felt until this day. Although the third phase (1989-2010) brought about freedoms and rights for the Roma, with large sums spent on various Roma-related programs, the situation on the ground nevertheless did not improve. Segregation and marginalization continues, and it is rampant. The authors powerfully conclude: while Roma became part of the political community, they are still not part of the national one. Subjects: Romanies--Hungary. | Romanies--Hungary--Social conditions. | Marginality, Social--Hungary. | Romanies--Legal status, laws, etc.--Hungary. | Minorities--Government policy--Hungary. | Hungary--Ethnic relations. | Hungary--Social policy.
Thirteen essays by scholars from seven countries discuss the political use and abuse of history in the recent decades with particular focus on Central and Eastern Europe (Hungary, Poland, Estonia, Moldova, Ukraine, Russia as case studies), but also includes articles on Germany, Japan and Turkey, which provide a much needed comparative dimension. The main focus is on new conditions of political utilization of history in post-communist context, which is characterized by lack of censorship and political pluralism. The phenomenon of history politics became extremely visible in Central and Eastern Europe in the past decade, and remains central for political agenda in many countries of the regions. Each essay is a case study contributing to the knowledge about collective memory and political use of history, offering a new theoretical twist. The studies look at actors (from political parties to individual historians), institutions (museums, Institutes of National remembrance, special political commissions), methods, political rationale and motivations behind this phenomenon.
Deals with the intersection of issues associated with globalization and the dynamics of core-periphery relations. It places these debates in a large and vital context asking what the relations between cores and peripheries have in forming our vision of what constitutes globalization and what were and are its possible effects. In this sense the debate on globalization is framed as part of a larger and more crucial discourse that tries to account for the essential dynamics—economic, social, political and cultural—between metropolitan areas and their peripheries.
Twenty years of Independence, 1993–2013
The essays in the book compare the Czech Republic and Slovakia over the twenty years that had passed after the breakup of Czechoslovakia in 1993. The papers deal with the causes of the divorce and discuss the political, economic and social developments in the new countries. This is the only English-language volume that presents the synoptic findings of leading Czech, Slovak, and North American scholars in the field. The authors of the papers in the book include two former Prime Ministers of the Czech Republic and Slovakia (Petr Pithart and Jozef Moravcik), eight leading scholars (four Czechs: Jan Rychlik, Adela Gjuricova, Martin Pospisil and Oldrich Tuma; and four Slovaks: Jozef Zatkuliak, Juraj Hocman, Martin Butora and Miroslav Londak), and eight knowledgeable commentators from North America (Carol Skalink Leff, James W. Peterson, John Gould, Kevin Deegan-Krause, Michael Kraus, Sharon Fisher, Sharon Wolchik, and Stanislav J. Kirschbaum). The most significant new insight was that, in spite of predictions by various pundits in the Western World that the Czech Republic would flourish after the breakup and Slovakia would languish, the opposite has happened. While the Czech Republic did well in its early years, it is now languishing while Slovakia, which had a rough start, is now doing very well. Anyone interested in the history of the Czech and Slovak Republics over the last twenty years will find gratification in reading this book.