Zsolt Spéder (Ed.)
Hungary in Flux
Society, Politics and Transformation
254 Pages, EUR 29,70, ISBN 3-89622-035-7

Hungarians, like other post-communist nations, have been living for ten years in a society undergoing ´transformation´, in transition from a socialist system of social and economic organization to an institutional system of bourgeois democracy and a market economy based on private ownership.
This volume, Hungary in Flux, deals with this last great transformation at the end of the 20th century, with the weak links in social integration, the change of elites, poverty, the Hungarian state of mind, political thinking, and voter allegiances. Several articles concern the transformation of the social structure and the way political behaviour is imbedded in it. Almost every article refers to the values, attitudes and behaviour of those participating in and experiencing the transformation, and to the consequences of these attitudes. Finally, the book examines, through election results, how these values and preferences tie in with the political system. So the selection focuses not only on the transformation of the social structure, but on behavioural characteristics and relations  that are harder to grasp, more volatile and deeper lying.


Society and the Transformation

  • Rudolf Andorka: The Weak Links in Social Integration – System Transformation in Hungary
  • Tamás Kolosi and Matild Sági: Change of System  - Change of Elite
  • Zsolt Spéder: The Twin Faces of Poverty in Present-day Hungary

The Hungarian State of Mind

  • Péter Róbert: Gritting the Teeth – Embittered with the Change of System
  • Mária Kopp, Árpád Skrabski, János LĹke and Sándor Szedmák: The Hungarian State of Mind in a Transforming Society
  • Zsuzsanna Elekes and Borbála Paksi: Are Politics Getting People Down? Changing Trends in Suicide and Alcoholism

The Politics of Transformation

  • András Körösényi: The Mainstream of Hungarian Political Thinking, 1989-1995
  • Zsolt Enyedi: Relationships between Authoritarianism and Political Affiliations

The Volatility of Party Loyalties

  • Róbert Angelusz and Róbert Tardos: ‚Autobiographical’ Respondents – Systematized Biases in Retrospective Data on Voter Preferences
  • Zoltán Fábian: Voter Allegiances and Voter Loyalty

The editor Zsolt Spéder is sociologist and Senior Lecturer at the Budapest University of Economic Sciences, a founder of the Hungarian Household Panel Study, and editor-in-chief of the journal Századvég. The book has been published in cooperation of the “Századvég” Budapest School of Politics Foundation and the Social Research Center (WZB), Berlin.

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