BASEES REGIONAL CONFERENCE IN BUDAPEST DECEMBER 8-9TH 2016
“1956 AND ITS INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENT”
HOSTED BY THE INSTITUTE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE (IFAT), BUDAPEST
For some years the BASEES committee has been discussing the possibility of holding a regional conference outside the UK in addition to the annual in Cambridge. The reasoning behind such a geographical extension of our activities is that it would help to cement the role the annual conference plays in bringing together scholars from across Europe. Rising travel costs, visa difficulties and timing constraints have meant that young scholars, in particular, have found it difficult to participate in international conferences and to present their work to scholars outside their immediate community. The conference that BASEES ran in Budapest hosted by the Institute of Foreign Affairs and Trade was the first, modest, step towards a BASEES regional conference becoming an annual or biannual event. We would welcome any expression of interest from colleagues in Europe, West of the Ural.
The conference in Budapest was themed on the 60th anniversary of the 1956 Revolution and it consisted of two days of panels and round tables put together by BASEES and IFAT. Participants from higher education institutions in six countries took part. IFAT showcased the research of its graduate students working on different aspects of 1956 and invited participants in the events of 1956 to talk about their experiences. BASEES was able to draw on members working on different aspects of Hungarian and Soviet politics, history and sociology to discuss the context and impacts of 1956 and was responsible for inviting the two keynote speakers. The first was Dr Janos Rainer, leading commentator on the the 1956 Revolution in Hungary. The focus of his presentation was on remembering the Revolution and he drew attention to the dangers of post-1989 re-writing of Hungarian history.
The second keynote was by political theorist Dr John Schwarzmantel, who reminded the audience of impact on the Hungarian Revolution on the thinking of West European communist parties. These two keynote lectures are available on the following links:
Details of all panels and round tables are included in IFAT’s report of the conference on its website at: