The competencies of the Imperial Council of Austria regarding international treaties, especially the Treaty of Berlin, between 1867 and 1918
This paper examines the competencies of the Imperial Council of Austria regarding international treaties between 1867 and 1918 with a special focus on the Treaty of Berlin, an extremely significant treaty for Austria and Hungary. It has to be pointed out that the paper examines solely the Austrian legislature's tethers and does not look into those of the Hungarian parliament in this regard. Thus the paper will not discuss the question of the relations between international treaties and the common affairs. The international treaties of Austria were concluded by the emperor, but for those that imposed financial load on the state the consent of the parliament was necessary. The 1878 Treaty of Berlin raised controversy in the Austrian parliament on the interpretation of the aforementioned norm, as there was no information furnished by the referred law. The Austrian government was heavily criticized for starting to enact the contract before having tabled it to the parliament. The issue treated in this paper sheds light on the fact that Austrian law had not regulated clearly the role of the parliament in international treaties.
The sanctity of history and Jewish fate. Hungarian Jewish scientific views on the meaning of history during the Shoah era.
The paper aims to describe the debate among the Hungarian Jewish community on historicity in the 1930s, using popular science articles from the fifteen yearbooks published by the Izraelita Magyar Irodalmi Társulat (Israelite Hungarian Literary Society, or IMIT) between 1929 and 1943. The author seeks answers to the following questions: How did Hungarian Jewish scholars see the meaning of history? What other key concepts were used (such as tradition, religion, fate, character, redemption etc.) during the debate on the meaning of history? What did they think about the relation of these to each other and their relative significance? The most important lesson of this empirical research is that a very wide range of perspectives on historicity were articulated in the IMIT yearbooks. This range spans from the mainly apologetic articulation of the idea of a Jewish past of loyalty and contribution to ahistorical essentialism. The article shows that the rest of the contributors to the IMIT yearbooks positioned themselves between these two ends of the spectrum. Some pursued a utopian idea of breaking out of history, which could be directly connected to political agendas. Others argued for the unity of the Jewish tradition, this way indirectly suggesting that historical changes were not significant. While there were some who talked about the fundamental injustice of history, contrasting it with the nobility and perseverance of the Jewish character.
The history and the myth of the pub Ilkovics in the recollections of its former customers
Urban legend and the literary (and journalist) constructs influencing it preserved the late Ilkovics as a kind of symbol of 1940s and 1950s Budapest, an asylum for the underworld as well as disgraced but uncompromising intellectuals. Even today, it is often seen as a meeting place for the intellectual déclassé (as this group was referred to in the 1950s) and as a symbol of resistance to the establishment. One of the literary topoi related to the pub is that it was the favorite meeting place for freedom fighters in October and November 1956, and it is depicted as a cult site related to the revolution in the examined literary works, columns and oral history narratives – despite the fact, for example, that it was allowed to operate until 1961, when the reconstruction of the square began. The 1956-related fame of the pub was reinforced by the hostile and scapegoatist view of the authorities that looked upon its customers with suspicion, so the post-revolution propaganda of the “counterrevolution” partly blamed the Ilkovics’s noisy customer base, the “barflies” for the violence that ensued October 23. Another common belief about this unique drinking establishment is that it was the only pub open at night from 1945 till the revolution of 1956 and, consequently, was a very important space in city nightlife. The case of The Ilkovics shows that a cult bar may have several coexistent constructs. The more personal memories our witnesses have about the bar the more the myth unravels in the text of the interviews – and this seems to be especially true for the memoir excerpt examined. The paper does not aim to contest the credibility of the sources, rather, it wants to demonstrate the range of possible interpretations. While all the memories show that The Ilkovics used to be a symbolic establishment in the life of Budapest, the authors’ / narrators’ goals and identities, the strength and depth of their relationships to the place and their views on history, all determine the way they relate to this legendary pub as a social space.
The relations of the pop music scene and the ministry of culture between 1956 and 1972
The paper focuses on the first fifteen years of the Kádár regime from a cultural and political historical perspective, and describes some of the elements with which the power machinery of the single-party state tried to control pop music. It claims that the emphases in the supervision of the Hungarian pop music scene changed slightly during the period, and consequently examines the controlling strategies by the establishment in shorter periods of time, namely between 1956 and 1963, between 1963 and 1968 and between 1968 and 1972. The author also touches upon the three “F”s of the Kádár regime: fostering, forbearing and forbidding (three T-s in Hungarian: támogatás, tűrés, tiltás), the various manifestations of this policy as well as how it was applied in practice. It specifically discusses the information collected for one of the high-ranking officials in the ministry of culture, Görgy Aczél, and the records of the government office on pop music (eg. on the wage categories for professional entertainer musicians; the problems of issuing license for them and the questions of their management). The records on the state of vinyl record production, the case of the foundation of the National Center for Entertainment Music (Országos Szórakoztatózenei Központ, OSZK) and the measures concerning pop music taken by the National Radio (Magyar Rádió) all ended up in Aczél’s office. The OSZK functioned as a national authority: it was responsible for broadcasting music events, exercised control over musicians and singers, issued, supervised and, if needed, revoked their licenses, and organized the categorization exams, which directly affected the artists’ life standards. The OSZK received less funding from the ministry of inland commerce than its predecessor in the Rákosi era. The relation of the government and dance schools between 1963 and 1967 is also of interest. The paper takes a look at the individual lives of some dance teachers as well as at the case of the council of Komló that requested advice from the ministry on the group dances of ballroom dancing courses. The chapter on licensing of performances, programs and shows between 1968 and 1972 describes, among other things, the government's opinion about such popular musicals as Jesus Christ Superstar and An Imaginary Report on an American Pop Festival.
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