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Hungarian Culture and Politics
in the Habsburg Monarchy, 1711–1848

Gábor Vermes, Rutgers University, New Jersey

This book describes and analyzes the critical period of 1711-1848 within Hungary from novel points of view, including close analyses of the proceedings of Hungarian diets.  Contrary to conventional interpretations, the study, stressing the strong continuity of traditionalism in Hungarian thought, society, and politics, argues that Hungarian liberalism did not begin to flower in any substantial way until the 1830s and 1840s.

Hungarian Culture and Politics in the Habsburg Monarchy also traces and evaluates the complex relationship between Austria and Hungary over this span of time.  Past interpretations have, with only a few exceptions, tilted heavily towards the Austrian role within the Monarchy, both because its center was in Vienna and because few non-Hungarian scholars can read Hungarian. This analysis redresses this balance through the use of both Austrian and Hungarian sources, demonstrating the deep cultural differences between the two halves of the Monarchy, which were nevertheless closely linked by economic and administrative ties and by a mutual recognition that co-existence was preferable to any major rupture.

396 pages, cloth, 2014
$65.00 / €45.00 / £38.00

"Hungarian Culture and Politics in the Habsburg Monarchy, 1711–1848 is a fascinating exercise in turning back the clock and bringing an old school approach to the telling of Hungarian history. Gábor Vermes has chosen to focus on constructing ameta-narrative that focuses on the power elite and how that power elite guided the system. This is an excellent book for those interested in reading about the East Central European nobility and its contribution to the advancement of the enlightenment, nation building, and the flowering of liberal democracy in 1848. The book will appeal to those who are curious about the history of the elite, and howspecifically the former feudal elitemade a critical contribution to modernization in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century East Central Europe. It will engage those students of nationalism who are intrigued by the nation-state building role the nobility can play and, more specifically, the cultural background that can account for the making of this important class." - Journal of Modern History