The prime task for the year is to process at individual and Institute level the thematic change outlined in 2001 and to ‘imbed’ this in the necessary way. Our main need is for research and for reflection, internal debate and workshop activity within a narrow circle. We are not in a position at present to bring out more than our usual five to seven publications a year. Our findings will be published on the Internet and in the Yearbook. We will continue to rely on present supporters, but we will not strive to gain new sources of funding at any cost—because that would make the administration opaque, dissipate our energies, and in the longer term, lead to increasing general superficiality. We are submitting new competitive funding applications only to renew our equipment and to finance projects whose themes dovetail with our current programmes.

The most important of these is the research programme ‘The 1960s’, which began in 2001 and continues in 2002. After requisite collection of materials and research during the year, micro-analyses (case studies) of the context of the period will be prepared as soon as possible. Workshop discussions will be held on the context and methodology during the first half of the year. The studies prepared will be debated in smallish workshops and the debate recorded. Based on the lessons of these debates, a volume of such micro-historical studies will be finalized at the end of the year, broadly speaking with the following themes:

Gyula Kozák: Footnotes to the History of Hungary in the 1960s

Csaba Békés: Hungary and the Warsaw Treaty in the 1960s

János Tischler: Hungary and Poland

Éva Standeisky: Democratic Rightism in the Early Kádár Period—Gyula Zsigmond and his Group

János M. Rainer: The ‘Historical Middle Class’ in the Kádár Period—a Case Study of

József Antall and the Toldy Grammar School

Pál Germuska: Tatabánya in the 1960s

Tibor Valuch: The Disintegration of Peasant Society and the Transformation of the

Village Way of Life in the 1960s—a Case Study

János Kenedi: Westernization and Youth (Case Study of a Gang)

Adrienne Molnár: The Reintegration of ’56 Offenders—a Case Study

Workshop participants will already have available to them an initial, rough version of a selection from the Oral History Archive (by Adrienne Molnár and Zsuzsanna Kőrösi) entitled ‘Destiny Paradigms in the 1960s’ or ‘The World of the 1960s Recollected’. Also conceivable is a smaller selection of interviews from the OHA made recently with returnee Hungarians: The Hungarian 1960s from Outside, or First Visits Home. The first selection from the photographic database is available; this can be developed into a publication at a later date. Work has to begin on the digital (Internet) historical manual ‘The Sixties’, plans for which have to be drawn up (by Zoltán Lux, Judit Topits and others). According to the present ideas, it will differ from previous such publications (on the 1956 and 1944–53 websites and the 1944–56 CD–ROM) in not being built primarily on texts, but rather having a database character—chronology, bibliography (László Győri), lists of persons and concepts, pictures, items of data, tables, figures, maps (all) etc.

Researches centred on the history of the 1956 Revolution will be continued in 2002 by László Eörsi (the Budapest uprising and insurgents), Attila Szakolczai (biography of Attila Szigethy, workers’ councils, provincial events), and to a smaller extent Éva Standeisky (civil organization during the 1956 Revolution). Krisztián Ungváry will continue to work on his book ‘Genocide and Social Policy’, which will appear during the year.

The OHA will continue during 2002 its interview and interview-processing programmes entitled ‘Destiny Paradigms’ and ‘Returnees’. The most important feature of the expansion of our computer databases will be the development of the content service covering the 1960s. There will be further expansion of the photo-documentary database, mainly through organization into a database of the pictorial sources of the 1960s and the Kádár period. We will continue to prepare document films on contemporary history subjects using competitive funding applications.

Only one publication features for certain in our 2002 publishing programme—a volume of studies from the 2002 3rd National Conference on Contemporary History (jointly with the University of Debrecen), for which we have already paid in for our participation. If possible, we will publish the volume Yearbook 10 at the end of the year. An English-language collection of 1956 source materials is appearing with the CEU Press in the spring. If we manage to obtain funds, we will reprint the extremely successful history of the ’56 Revolution by Attila Szakolczai. Incidentally, it seems likely that the Institute will only be able to publish books in future through other publishers.


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Copyright © 2000 National Széchényi Library 1956 Institute and Oral History Archive
Last updated:  Wednesday, 19-March-2008

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