News in Hungarian Studies – December 17, 2022 (Issue 101)

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS for Open Position:  HSAC President

The Hungarian Studies Association of Canada is seeking nominations for the position of president. The term of this open board position is two years, with the possibility of re-election. Nominations can be sent to our current president and nominations committee chair, Steve Jobbitt, at Nominations are due by Jan. 15, 2023. Self-nominations are welcome.


  • Agatha Schwartz retired from the University of Ottawa on July 1 as Professor Emeritus. She has also published a book titled Wartime violence, trauma, and resilience in the narratives of German Canadians (Ottawa: Legas, 2022).
  • Oliver Botar received the prestigious Moholy-Nagy Award 2022 in Budapest.  Please read below for more information about Oliver’s award and his outstanding contributions to our understanding of the work of Moholy-Nagy.

Image credit:  University of Manitoba News Today website

World-renowned art historian and curator Olivér Botár receives the Moholy-Nagy Award 2022

Date: 2022.10.25
One of the most widely known Moholy-Nagy researchers in the world, art historian and curator Dr. Olivér Botár Jr. (Oliver A. I. Botar) will be presented the Moholy-Nagy Award on 27 October 2022 by Rector József Fülöp at the MOME Campus.

Botár is one of the most widely known researchers of László Moholy-Nagy’s oeuvre and Central European modernism, and has made an outstanding contribution in recent decades to a better understanding of the complexity the work of the eponym of Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design holds and its impact on contemporary culture worldwide. The professor and associate director of the University of Manitoba, School of Art curated the comprehensive exhibition Bauhaus (Canada) 101 which debuted last year in Canada, and is the author of several books, including Nature and Art: Moholy-Nagy Reconsidered (1916-1923) which was published also in Hungarian. His research reinterpreted the work of Moholy-Nagy, identifying biocentrism and environmental and natural consciousness as defining aspects of the ethos of the artist hitherto regarded as technology- and innovation-oriented. In light of the global challenges facing us, this dimension lends particular relevance to the exploration of his oeuvre for designers, artists and education institutions. In Dr. Botár’s words, „Moholy-Nagy’s entire pedagogical approach was intended to show people how to lead a happier life in modernity, together with the flow and overflow of technology.”

With its decision, the award committee recognises the work of Dr. Botár and wishes to contribute to the forging of closer ties between the world-renowned researcher and the institution bearing the name of László Moholy-Nagy and continuing his legacy in the 21st century, as well as its students, teachers, and researchers. . . .

About the Moholy-Nagy Award 

Since 2006, the award is presented each November to individuals whose outstanding creative activity is founded on the same values as those of the university and its eponym. Previous Moholy-Nagy laureates include world-famous Hungarian-born designer Stefan Lengyel, inventor of the Rubik’s Cube Ernő Rubik, one of the greatest product designers of our age Dieter Rahms, who became known worldwide as Braun’s lead designer, art historian Krisztina Passuth, choreographer Pál Frenák, and network researcher Albert-László Barabási. In 2021, the university awarded the Moholy-Nagy Award to architect Zsófia Csomay and, posthumously, to architect Péter Reimholz, founders of the CET Budapest architect office and teachers of the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design. . . .

About Dr. Olivér Botár 

Ifj. Dr. Olivér Botár (Oliver A. I. Botar) university professor, author and curator was born in 1957 in Toronto to Hungarian parents who fled the country in 1956. In 1979 he obtained a BA in Urban Geography from the University of Alberta in Edmonton (minors: Philosophy and English) and in 1985 an MA in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Toronto. He studied Art History at the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest in 1979-80 and 1984-85, then went on to earn an MA followed by a PhD in Art History from the University of Toronto in 1987 and 1998, respectively. He taught Modern and Contemporary Art and History of Architecture, in particular New/Alternative Media Art, Modernism between the World Wars (including Central and Eastern European Modernism) and curatorial practice, at several Canadian universities. He started teaching History of Modern Art in 1996 at the Manitoba University, where he was appointed professor in 2011. His research, writings and curatorial work for exhibitions focus on art, architecture, photography and media art from the early to the mid 20th century, in particular early 20th-century Hungarian avant-garde. Throughout his career, he focused on biocentrism, modernism, Bauhaus, and the art and ideals of László Moholy-Nagy. He lectured in Canada, the United States, Europe and Japan, and curated several hugely successful, internationally acclaimed exhibitions. He is the author of many definitive works and the recipient of major research grants, including from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal and the Institut für Literaturwissenschaft in Berlin. He is currently living in Winnipeg and working on a book on the settler art in Winnipeg/Treaty One Territory. 


Hungarian Studies Association of Canada (HSAC)
Call for Papers for the 2023 Annual Conference

Reckonings and Re-Imaginings: Hungary, Hungarians, and the Quest for Justice

The Hungarian Studies Association of Canada invites proposals for individual papers, posters, roundtable discussions, workshops, complete panels, and other innovative presentations and sessions for our annual conference to be held in conjunction with the Congress of Social Sciences and Humanities hosted by York University in Toronto, Ontariofrom May 30June 1, 2023. As the conference will follow a hybrid format, we invite proposals for both in-person and virtual presentations. Please indicate in your proposal which presentation format you wish to be considered for.

Building on the Congress theme of “Reckonings and Re-Imaginings” and its target emphasis on the achievement of social equity and environmental sustainability, this year’s HSAC conference seeks proposals that thematize efforts to challenge injustice, as well as social systems that thwart human and environmental flourishing. This complex of themes opens the door to a wide range of topics from historical events and movements, to political, economic, legal, ethical, literary, journalistic, artistic and scientific responses to injustice and inequity. We also encourage proposals that consider the ways in which a more just and equitable future has been envisioned and imagined, a future in which social and environmental concerns take centre stage. All constructive considerations of these themes within the field of Hungarian studies writ large will be considered.

Although we strongly encourage proposals that speak to the conference theme, we will also consider proposals on any topic related to Hungary and Hungarian Studies. The Hungarian Studies Association of Canada also supports and encourages both creative and critical scholarly engagement within and across disciplines.

We especially encourage proposals from graduate students. In addition to offering modest funding to offset the costs of participation in the conference, HSAC will choose one graduate student presenter to receive Congress’s Graduate Merit Award. The award winner will be recognized publicly by Congress, and will receive a $500 award.    

Proposals should include a maximum 300-word abstract and a brief 100-word bio that can be used to introduce the speaker. Since both the abstract and the bio will be published online, they should be prepared in Word format using Times New Roman, 12-point font. Abstracts should be sent electronically both to the Chair of the Program Committee, Ginny Lewis (, and to Agatha Schwartz ( Proposals are preferred in English or French but will also be accepted in Hungarian if an English language abstract is also provided.

Presentations at the conference are no longer than 20 minutes with an additional 5-10 minutes for discussion. The deadline for submission is Monday, January 16th, 2023. We will notify presenters of the Committee’s decisions no later than March 15, 2023.

The HSAC Conference Program Committee is chaired by Ginny Lewis of Northern State University ( The other members are:

Agatha Schwartz:

Oliver Botar:

Congress 2023 Theme: Reckonings and Re-Imaginings.

Drawing on the lessons of Black Lives Matter, Idle No More, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, Congress 2023 will focus on new reckonings for how to live in non-hierarchical relationships that respect our human differences, while protecting the environment we depend on.This theme also reflects the vision of Associate Professor Andrea Davis, Academic Convenor for Congress 2023, and her collaboration with members of the York University community. Under the theme Reckonings and Re-Imaginings, Congress will honour Black and Indigenous knowledges and cultures, and centre the diverse voices and ideas of scholars, graduate students, policymakers and community members in vital conversations about the most pressing issues facing our world.”


Hungarian Studies Review

CALL FOR ARTICLES: The History of Property Regimes in Hungary
For 50th Anniversary Issue of Hungarian Studies Review

Submission Deadline: January 15, 2023

Modern Hungarian history can be told as one of changing property regimes. The long nineteenth century saw the sanctioning of capitalist private property against the feudal and corporate ones, while the twentieth century witnessed the forced introduction of socialist property after World War II and its dismantling after 1989. Each new property regime was linked to specific ideologies and legitimations of particular political structures that sanctioned certain property rights; the law not only defined what property meant and determined people’s connection to it, but it also shaped one’s ties to other individuals as well as the state. In short, each property regime was tied to a particular vision of citizenship, to rules of inclusion/exclusion, and fostered certain subjectivities.

The late eighteenth century Theresan and Josephist reforms created the legal basis of exclusive private property, contributing to the material improvement of the lot of serfs and peasant smallholders against landlords. The nineteenth century liberal legislation sought to transform land into a commodity and regarded society as independent producers and sellers, which disadvantaged the poor and uneducated. The successor states of the Austro-Hungarian Empire nationalized the property declared as formerly belonging to the state, often de facto belonging to the churches and corporations. The authoritarian Horthy Regime invented stigmatized social categories like Jews, Sinti and Roma, the mentally disabled, and homosexuals, to first exclude them from citizenship rights, and then to expropriate their property. Finally, they were even exterminated in the context of the Holocaust. The socialist party-state of the “peasants and workers” continued the violent practice of social exclusion and expropriation, this time prosecuting and stigmatizing “Kulaks” or aristocrats and bourgeois capitalists.  The collapse of socialism and its property regime brought the re-privatization and restitution of property, particularly after the EU accession. Each property regime change was accompanied by conflicts and sometimes protracted violence; it transformed social bonds and solidarities, defined the “us” against the “them” anew and shaped the self-understanding of individuals, often in terms that were antagonistic to dominant ideologies embraced by the state and its elites.

We are seeking contributions about the nature and transformation of property in its broad socio-economic and political contexts in Hungary from the 18th until the 21st centuries in the fields of history, sociology, geography, art and literary history and political science. We are interested in studies exploring its historical forms and changes in the capitalist, right-wing authoritarian, socialist, and neoliberal political regimes. We welcome articles exploring representations of property, the “bundle of rights” attached to them, the connections of people to their property, to one another, to the state, and the world via ownership. We welcome analyses of subjectivities created by different property regimes, but also social bonds and antagonisms.  Last, but not least, we are interested in articles addressing the emergence of new types of properties and the conflicts created by them, enabled by techno-scientific development and the transnational circulation of goods.

Hungarian Studies Review is a peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary academic journal dedicated to publishing humanities and social scientific scholarship on contemporary and historical issues related to Hungary and the surrounding region, and to the Hungarian diaspora. Articles should be between 5000 and 7000 words and submitted through the Hungarian Studies Review’s online portal ( by January 15, 2023.

Please send any questions to the journal’s managing editor, Dr. Leslie Waters:


This issue of the newsletter was compiled by Angela Chong. If you have any news items for the next issue, please send them to and/or