East European Communities: The Struggle for Balance in Turbulent Times

By David A. Kideckel | Go to book overview
13.
"We forced people to do what was good for them," one collective chairman said in a typical commentary. But ordinary members, too, feel profoundly demoralized at the prospect of the passing of the collectives ( Rab 1992:62-87). Indeed, even in Pecsely the possibility of extracting their part from.the vast regional collective of which it is now a fraction and restore a truly local collective, as it had been until 1973 (and quite successful at that) proved economically inviable. On the other hand, in the neighboring village of Szentgal a new collective was indeed formed in 1992.
14.
The balance of daily work hours is very revealing. In 1988, a man spent on average 231 minutes/day on his main job, ninety-eight minutes on small-plots, and a further thirty-four minutes on building, do-it-yourself etc. Women worked 150 minutes/day on a main job and a further 58 on the small-plot ( Andorka 1991:242-50). Adding almost a third to a normal working day speaks of exceptional self-exploitation.
15.
Total collapse of the agrarian structure is forecast regularly in both newspapers and sociological analyses ( Sipos and Halmai 1991:33-44). Crisis management is reckoned to be essential but suggested interventions are contradictory: modernization, but avoidance of overproduction; labor saving mechanization, but without loss of jobs; more export westward, while it is well known that Western European markets are burdened by market saturation of their own. Agriculture, it would seem, has become too efficient for its own good. But what has been learned cannot be unlearned. A stricter ecologically oriented organic farming may offer some solutions but is not yet politically nor socio-economically viable.

References

Agh, A. 1992. "The Year of Structural Stalemate". MOPE, pp. 17-35. Budapest.

_____. 1990. "Mit Kell Meghallani 1990-ben". Kozgazdasagi Szemle 37( 10):1194-1220. Budapest.

_____. 1992. "Social Changes in Hungary in the past Years". MOPE, pp. 242-251. Budapest.

Baric, L. 1965. "Traditional Groups and New Economic Opportunities in Rural Yugoslavia". In R. Firth, ed., Themes of Economic Anthropology, no. 6 pp. 253-277. London: Tavistock.

Bodosi, Gy. 1992. "Vagyainkat Terelgessuk Legalabb!" Vaszpremi Naplo, July 16, p. 4.

Bourdieu, P. 1977. An Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Donath, F. 1980. Reform and Revolution -- Transformation of Hungary's Agriculture, 1945-1970. Budapest: Corvina.

Elek, S. 1991. "Part Time Farming in Hungary: An Instrument of Tacit Decollectivization". Sociologica Ruralis 31:82-88.

Franklin, S. H. 1969. The European Peasantry: The Final Phase. London: Methuen.

Hann, C. M. 1980. Tazlar: A Village in Hungary. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

_____. 1993 "From Production to Property: Decollectivization and the Family-Land Relationship in Contemporary Hungary". Man 28:1-22.

Hollos, M. and Maday, B., Eds. 1983. New Hungarian Peasants: An Eastern European Experience of Collectivization. "Social Science Monograph". New York: Brooklyn College Press.

-23-

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