The West Envisions the West


Turning to the example of a particular Hungarian intellectual circle, I examine how Western-oriented thinkers in Eastern Europe formed their views about the pinnacle of civilization between the two world wars. My inquiry centers around the intellectual community of a literary and critical journal called Nyugal (West) which exerted a crucial and enduring influence on Hungarian print culture and public debates. The paper reveals that dreaming of and interpreting modernity in its fully developed Western forms fostered the creation of meaning and dignity for a local culture but developed new visions and expressions of life transcending local contexts and possibilities as well.

How to Cite

Zentai, V., (1999) “The West Envisions the West”, Ethnologia Europaea 29(1), p.69-84. doi:

Publisher Notes

  • This article was previously published by Museum Tusculanum Press.



Violetta Zentai (Janus Pannonius University)


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