Organization of the State and Party Supervision of Book Publishing in Hungary 1948-1956

Civic Review· VOL 17. Special Issue, 2021, 324–342., DOI: 10.24307/psz.2021.0023

Dr. Katalin Bella, PhD, Assistant Professor, Eötvös Loránd University, Faculty of Humanities, Institute of Library and Information Science (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).


After the Second World War, Hungary was forced into the sphere of the Soviet Union, which was accompanied by the introduction of a socialist based planned economy, the merger of state and party control, and the establishment of a one-man leadership. The author interprets the place and role of book publishing in the cultural policy of the period between 1948-1956 (also called the Rákosi era after the all-powerful leader) and aims to present the institutions governing book publishing. Due to the nature of basic research, the work relies primarily on archival research. The archival corpus that can be included in the research is vast and divergent, containing documents on cultural management and literary policy more broadly, from official provisions to more confidential records. The study examines the cultural governance organization of the dictatorship and its practical operation through a specific segment of the system, the operation of censorship of book publishing, and also demonstrates the organization of state and party supervision of publishers was a paramount task between 1948-1956.

Keywords: A monopolization of the institutional system of book publishing, literaturebased ideological state and party governance, censorship