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Survival of Utopias – Weiterlebende Utopien

Life Reform and Progressive Education in Austria and Hungary – Lebensreform und Reformpädagogik in Österreich und Ungarn


Edited By András Németh, Claudia Stöckl and Beatrix Vincze

Life reform and progressive education developed various utopias and projected new ways of cultural, social, religious and political living. This book studies how these utopias lived on until World War II, how they still affect present life in Austria and Hungary, and it examines continuities and differences within the political, educational and cultural movements of both countries. The main focus lies on interrelations between educational utopias and strategies and the development of a collective identity in times of radical political and social changes.

Lebensreform und Reformpädagogik entwarfen Utopien für das kulturelle, soziale und religiöse Leben. Dieses Buch untersucht das Weiterleben dieser Utopien bis zum Beginn des zweiten Weltkrieges, ihre Wirkungen bis in die Gegenwart in Österreich und Ungarn und beleuchtet Kontinuitäten und Differenzen innerhalb der (bildungs-)politischen und kulturellen Strömungen beider Länder. Im Zentrum steht die Frage nach Zusammenhängen zwischen pädagogischen Utopien und Strategien und den Entwicklungen von kollektiver Identität in Zeiten politischer und gesellschaftlicher Umbrüche und Verunsicherungen.

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The mystery plays of Valéria Dienes and Lajos Bárdos (Márk Fenyves & Villő Pethő)


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Márk Fenyves & Villő Pethő

The mystery plays of Valéria Dienes and Lajos Bárdos. Orkesztika1, choral-movement, movement choirs, influences, opportunities for institutionalisation

An opera in which the performers do not sing? An audience which is also a community? Art or arts which become an essential part of people’s everyday lives? At the beginning of the 20th century, both artists and pedagogues sought answers to the social crisis of the modern world. They were looking for new paths to solve the issues caused by alienation, modernisation and the crisis resulting from World War I. Man had to find his way to God, religion, nature and human values. Alternatives to the soulless inhumanity of people’s everyday lives were offered by movements connected to the life reform movement. Our research examined the efforts of innovators who worked under the influence of the reforms in two art forms: the art of movement and the art of music.

Our study is closely linked to the research examining the work of Valéria Dienes (the reform of the art of movement, dance and the culture of movement), and the Singing Youth, and within that the work of Lajos Bárdos, one of the founders of the movement. Based on original documents, in 2001 Márk Fenyves, together with the Hungarian Art of Movement Company2, revived “Hajnalvárás”3, the first mystery play by Valéria Dienes and Lajos Bárdos, the subsequent...

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