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Thu, 26 Oct 2017 05:08:32 EDT by webmaster, 3728 views
University of Pittsburgh
History/Political Science paper by Behrendt, Andrew (all papers)
Good Neighbors Make Better "Strangers": Hungarian-Austrian Tourism and the Legacies of Empire
My paper proposes to examine continuities and ruptures between post-Habsburg Austria and Hungary through the lens of tourism between the two countries in the interwar period. In their endeavor to package “Austria” or “Hungary” as attractive commodities, tourism promoters struggled to define who it was, precisely, that they were marketing them to. The very vocabulary of the tourism industry at this time blurred the lines between domestic and international tourists. Both were denoted, ambiguously, by the word “stranger,” leaving uncertain (at least on paper) the relationships among the imagined Tourist, his/her “home” nation, and the place he/she was visiting.
My paper will explore how the quest to lure the “stranger” both sustained and was reliant upon certain habits laid down during imperial times: cross-border traffic between Austria and Hungary, the symbiotic rivalry of Budapest versus Vienna, and attempts to rekindle Habsburg-era “friendship” between Austrians and Hungarians. Despite (mostly one-sided) competition between the two capitals, not to mention the violent hostility that marked the two countries’ separation in the early postwar years, the 1930s marked an “era of good feelings” between them, especially after the imposition of the Austrian Ständestaat in 1934. This was particularly evident in tourism promotion on both sides of the border, which cast Austrians and Hungarians as special and reunited friends, invoking the old imperial “partnership.” In these ways, tourism allows us to see how the breakup of the empire fundamentally reframed, but did not destroy, the economic and cultural networks of the successor states.
Brief Professional Bio:
Andrew Behrendt is Academic Advisor at the Center for Russian and East and Russian and East European Studies at the University of Pittsburgh, as well as NewsNet Editor/Program Coordinator for ASEEES. He is a historian of modern east-central European culture, specializing in the history of media, tourism, consumerism, and nationalism in Austria and Hungary. He completed his PhD at the University of Pittsburgh in April 2016. His next project, provisionally titled “Operetta Empire,” will explore the media world of the Habsburg Monarch and its successor states from 1848 to the dawn of the television age. Contact: 4417 W. W. Posvar Hall, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260 email@example.com