Budapest. Lumumba Street. Nehru Coast. Havana Housing Estate. Places we pass, places from the past. Or are they past? After 1989, the ‘return to Europe’ resulted in the neoliberal ‘whitening out’ of the Hungarian memories of socialist era anti-colonial solidarities to the Third World. Recent political discourse has been largely Westcentric and focused on colonial memory, collections and monuments. Against Westcentrism and Eurowhite ignorance, we need a world-systemic approach to decipher the ‘transperipheral’ relations within the Hungarian semiperipheral world-systemic integration to global capitalism.
This paper follows a world-systemic and decolonial approach to investigate Hungarian semiperipheral positioning strategies in global colonial history by looking at the interactions and converging interests of Hungary and Ghana in the early 1960s. The paper focuses on József Bognár, a hugely important but forgotten political figure in socialist era Hungarian economics and foreign economic policy-making. In 1963, Bognár founded a government think tank, the Centre for AfroAsian Research (CAAR) at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (renamed in 1973 as the Institute for World Economy). The institute evolved out of Bognár’s “Ghana job”: Ghanaian president Kwame Nkrumah, on the occasion of his Eastern European round-trip in 1961, asked Bognár to develop Ghana’s First Seven-Year Plan.
Transperiphery Conversations #2 Photographer and curator Bartosz Nowicki in conversation with Zoltán Ginelli talk about the socialist era history of Global South students in Eastern Europe by focusing on Poland and Hungary, and introduce Nowicki’s Afro-PRL (Polish People’s Republic) project showcased in the exhibition.
Transperiphery Conversations #3 Philosopher and cultural theorist Ovidiu Ţichindeleanu talks with Zoltán Ginelli about Négritude and Pan-Africanism in Eastern Europe by focusing on case studies and insights from Hungary and Romania.
This research explores how Hungarians on both sides of the Iron Curtain opened up to Afro-Asian decolonisation through competing constructions of Eastern European semiperipheral postcoloniality. Eastern Europe has been excluded from global colonial history, which […]
The history of internationalism was quickly forgotten following the fall of socialist regimes in Eastern Europe. But now these stories are surfacing once again, fascinating a new generation alive to conflicts over peoples and cultures on the move in today’s global order and seeking fresh takes on the past. This festival presents a rich and exciting range of films inspired by ideas of revolution, national liberation, and solidarity between socialist Eastern Europe and the Global South. We bring the Romanian audience stories from Cuba, Angola, Kyrgyzstan, Mauritania, and the former Yugoslavia—stories that explore belonging, border-crossing, and belief in radical change. Several of the directors featured were themselves internationalist migrants in the socialist era—men and women from the Global South who brought their talents to the socialist East. All bring visions of socialist worlds that shatter the easy black and white categories of the Cold War and raise important questions about what it means to be international, and in solidarity, then and now.
Check out our panel at the ASEEES Summer Convention in Zagreb in 14-16 June 2019, to be held at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb. Organizer: Zoltán Ginelli How did Hungarian politics, in […]
17 April 5:30 PM Seminar Room Department of Sociology Rutgers University 26 Nichol Ave New Brunswick, NJ 08901 facebook event Why was Hungary interested in the decolonized “developing world”? What does this episode of Eastern […]
I have sent two abstracts to the 17th International Conference of Historical Geographers in Warsaw, July 15–20 and one – the latter abstract here provided – to the Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting in New Orleans, April 10–14 in 2018.
Historical geographies of the “quantitative revolution”: Towards a transnational history of central place theory
“The Ghana job”: Opening Hungary to the developing world
My research report to the Open Society Archives turned out to be a draft of a lengthy working paper that summarizes some of the materials I have been working with. You can read about my OSA research proposal here.