"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.
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.
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
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