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Hungary – the overlap with Workers’ Memorial Day. A foundation on which to stand up and organize?

Whereas most trade unions in Eastern Europe also commemorated 28 April because of the uneven effects and implications of Covid-19 on the loss of workers’ lives, in Hungary this was even more emphatic. In 2020, 1 May in Hungary seemed to especially overlap with events and statements made around Workers’ Memorial Day – a day […]

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What Is the Hungarian “Pedophilia Act” and What Is behind It?

On June 10, 2021, the Hungarian parliament made public the contents of a proposed “Pedophilia Act,” to be voted on less than a week later, on June 15. The bill has caused general outrage among national and international human rights organizations. Considering the name under which that bill was circulated, it might sound surprising that […]

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The role of Chinese capital in the present Hungarian regime of accumulation: A context to the present political controversy over the Fudan University

Recent Chinese investments in Hungary have made waves in the international liberal press as part of Transatlantic narratives of hegemonic anxiety. These see Hungary’s “democratic backslide” and “flirtation” with Russia and China in the context of a new Cold War imaginary, defined through Huntingtonian characteristics of politico-cultural belonging. These interpretations have recently found their perfect […]

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All posts ELMO Series: Gig Work in CEE’s Platform Economy

“You don’t own a business; you own a bike or a Suzuki” — the realities of forced self-employment

This article was originally published in Mérce and was translated by Noémi Bíró. It is part of a series by ELMO (East Left Media Outlet). In honour of the international labor day, May 1st and May as a month dedicated to workers’ struggles, this article is part of an ELMO series titled “Gig work in […]

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The political economy of the post-socialist mortality crisis

Surviving and dying are life chances in the most profound sense, a truism that the corona pandemic has powerfully underpinned. Already before the pandemic hit, the declining life expectancy in deindustrialized, rustbelt areas and the accompanying deepening of health inequalities have been signaling the existential crisis of contemporary economic arrangements. Recent research by Ann Case […]

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COVID-19 Crisis in Hungarian Cultural Production – Vulnerability and deepening authoritarian control

Note from LeftEast editors: The article is complemented with the reproductions of the paintings of Rita Süveges. In her works, she inquires the possibilities of the representation of the capitalocene and the nature transformed by capital and labor. She is a member of xtro realm, an artist group, which is dealing with new-realist and ecological […]

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All posts Interviews

Interview with Wolfgang Streeck: “I definitely prefer a cooperative over an empire”

Note from LeftEast editors: This interview was originally published in Mérce, a left-wing news site in Hungary. It was conducted via e-mail and published on the occasion of Merkel’s departure from power, and to provide context for Hungary’s and Poland’s initial veto on the EU COVID19 recovery package. NL: For many Hungarians Germany is a […]

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All posts FeminEasts

New Solidarity Initiatives as an Important Ground for Building Transformative Politics: a conversation on Solidarity Economy Praxis in Hungary

LeftEast’s Mariya Ivancheva interviews Zsófia Ádám and Andrea Czerván of the Solidarity Economy Center in Budapest: “Our ultimate goal is to support the growth of a solidarity economy ecosystem, by which we mean a network of economic initiatives – with as few resources leaking out as possible and fulfilling as many needs as possible – that prioritizes the reproduction of life and the well-being of communities over profit, and operates in a socially and ecologically sustainable, democratic way.”

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The Helpers of the Afghan Park

Text and photos by Szilárd Kalmár, translated by Arnold Velansits. First published in Mérce. In the spring of 2015, a wave of refugees reached Europe of a size that had not been seen before. The general public – including us – was not informed, or barely were, about this situation and only realized what we […]

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The Rise of Heteronomous Academia on the EU’s Borderlands

ith the very recent founding of a “streamlined” Family Research Centre, compatible with the government’s political agenda, within the Academy’s Institute of Sociology, heteronomy in academe has reached a new peak. In a context where “family research” serves as a governmental counter-discourse par excellence to bash “gender studies” (generally associated with liberalism, multiculturalism, relativism and the CEU), the foundation of a “family research centre” within the Hungarian Academy of Sciences is not only ethically questionable; it is also a clear sign of governmental policies permeating the consecrated realms of science. The Centre’s official credo propagating “value-neutral” science on its homepage is anything but neutral, given that its creation is inseparable from an evidently over-politicised context. Therefore, “value-neutrality” should be better understood as a justificatory ideology for official sociology that aims “not to realise itself as a science but to realise an official image of science”.