The article offers a brief account of the history of Hungarian sociology during four decades of communist rule in Hungary. Beginning with the brief existence of the first department of sociology in Hungary (the 'Szalai Institute', 1946-1948) the authoress describes the field in the 1950s, when for political reasons sociology was marginalised to the point of extinction. The revival of sociology in Hungary during the 1960s is devoted considerable attention from an institutional, a personal and a doctrinal point of view. The authoress analyses the main branches of study in Hungarian sociology at the time, including critical sociology and the study of social stratification, which overcame the rigidity of official Marxist-Leninist doctrine. She characterises the last two decades of state socialism in Hungary as a period when sociology both suffered from increased political repression (stronger in the early 1970s than later) and at the same time became more and more professional. She argues that a determining feature of the history of Hungarian sociology between 1948 and 1989 was its strong connection to politics. However, sociology and politics had a mutual influence on one another during this period, as sociology also had an impact on the way Communist Party officials approached the structure of Hungarian society. In the process, sociology evolved and was professionalised, enabling its existence as an autonomous discipline today.
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