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Wed, 20 Apr 2011 13:02:38 EDT by admin, 125571 views
History paper by Szabó, Juliet (all papers)
The Emigration Policy of the Kádár Regime
Although emigration from Hungary has a long and sorrowful past, it was from the years around the beginning of the 20th century that the number of those leaving Hungary were of such magnitude that various Hungarian governments acted to form policy and instigate programs designed to both assuage the problem and also to encourage the return of Hungarian (e)migrants. Later, during and immediately after World War II Hungary was to again lose a part of her population nearing the number and quality of the previous migration to North America. It was in the wake of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and in the months to follow that approximately 200 000 Hungarians fled their homeland. Although the official propaganda of the Kádár regime was that the majority of the refugees were young people, misled by imperialist or “fascist” propaganda and for whose return the homeland waited with open arms, the regime did not, in fact, do everything possible to encourage their return. Indeed, ensuing policies often did more to hinder the return of Hungarian refugees than those of the previous stalinist Rákosi regime. Between 1956 and 1989 the Hungarian Socialist Workers’ Party instituted a number of policies and set up several organizations which, working within the framework of various foreign and internal Hungarian state bodies, and with not an insignificant amount of state financing, were designed to bring back to Hungary “desirables”, (i.e. those whose return would serve the interest of the regime, including those who left earlier than 1956), to hinder the return of “non-desirables”, and at the same time hamper the activities of emigré communities deemed to be unfriendly to the regime.
Brief Professional Bio:
Returning as an adult to the land her father left in 1956, Juliet Szabó spent a brief interval in the Hungarian civil sphere, and then a much longer time in Hungarian state administration working mainly with European Union legal harmonization matters. Several years ago she began the Ph.D. program at the Eötvös Loránd University researching the policy of the post-1956 Hungarian government towards its emigré community. Although her research concentrates on policy introduced by the Kádár regime, it also touches on emigré policy by Hungary towards its (e)migrant community throughout the 20th century as well as provides an overview on similar policy by other former Soviet satellite countries towards their respective emigré communities. She divides her time between Budapest and the Hungarian countryside where she has a peasant home.