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The Cinema of István SzabóVisions of Europe$
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John Cunningham

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231171991

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231171991.001.0001

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Szabó, Hungarian Cinema and the Question of Censorship – A Note

Szabó, Hungarian Cinema and the Question of Censorship – A Note

(p.135) Chapter Eleven Szabó, Hungarian Cinema and the Question of Censorship – A Note
The Cinema of István Szabó

John Cunningham

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines the stand of Hungarian director István Szabó regarding censorship in Hungary. Censorship was not a major issue for most filmmakers in Hungary, including Szabó. From the early 1960s on, the authorities displayed an increasingly relaxed attitude to the film industry and filmmakers were able, gradually, to push the boundaries of what was acceptable. Before looking into the specifics of the situation in Hungary, this chapter considers the broader questions of state censorship of the arts: how, for example, a work of art is controlled, or how artistic creativity is held in check or monitored. It also discusses some of the reasons for the relative openness in Hungary, including the initiatives of György Aczél who became Deputy Minister of Culture under the Kádár regime in 1957. Finally, it analyzes attempts to define Hungarian cinema by the use of notions of control, government interference or censorship, or the idea that this was somehow a major element in the cinematic and cultural landscape.

Keywords:   censorship, István Szabó, Hungary, film, film industry, filmmakers, arts, György Aczél, Hungarian cinema

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