Articles by G.M. Tamás

The Soros Affair

Swiftly after March 28th, when a legislative proposal backed by the FIDESZ government endangered the existence of Central European University in Hungary, events  followed at an unprecedented pace. The whirlwind of bellicose statements, powerful street-protests, counter-statements, and legislative show-down have highlighted some of the political strategies and structural constraints molding the decisions of the Viktor Orbán government. We publish here an article by GM Tamás which originally appeared at the beginning of the conflict in Hungarian, in the magazine HVG. Ironically referencing the numerous “affair ..

G.M. Tamás: “We Must Return to Politics”

G.M. Tamás, a leading Eastern European thinker, recently paid a visit to Bratislava during a demonstration against the march of Slovakian neo-fascists. On the eve before the protest, Lukáš Likavčan held a conversation with him about the Momentum Movement in Hungary, populism, solidarity, the betrayal of the left, and the possibility of left-wing movements in contemporary Eastern Europe. The interview was first published in English by Political Critique. Lukáš Likavčan: In Hungary, a young anti-Orbán grassroots movement, the Momentum Movement, recently claimed a major success in its campaign for a referend ..

The Never-Ending Lukács Debate

This article first appeared in The Los Angeles Review of Books on March 6, 2017. ON JANUARY 25, 2017, the Budapest City Council decided to remove the statue of Georg Lukács from a park in the city’s 13th district. We invited philosopher G. M. Tamás to comment on the significance of the gesture. Before 1914, Lukács’s early works were received with great antipathy by the literary establishment in Hungary; they were found to be too “German” — that is to say, too philosophical, not impressionistic and positivistic enough. That was only the beginning, of course; from then on, Lukács would be atta ..

Hungary 1956: a Socialist Revolution

Published on 7th October 2016 by International Socialism: Issue: 152. Republished with permission by LeftEast. We tend to forget the importance of the experience of people participating in historical events. The mainstream political literature presents 1945 in Eastern Europe as a Russian occupation that gradually forced a rootless system on a reluctant and recalcitrant population who obeyed out of fear. But almost nobody seems to have taken the pain to explain why even conservative or monarchist contemporaries called 1945 not only “liberation” but “revolution”. The new system—at the beginning plurali ..

Hungary: the Népszabadság Affair

Note from the LeftEast editors: Last Saturday employees of  Népszabadság  newspaper, the widest circulated daily in Hungary, found themselves locked out of their workplace and told they were no longer needed. On the  Népszabadság  editorial team facebook page the team team wrote: “Our first thought is that this is a coup. We will soon come back with more” after the newspaper’s website , stopped working , and invited the public to join them to demonstrate at Parliament later that day. They were joined by some 2,000 people. This article is translated into English for LeftEast by Lolo f ..