This book-related talk will explore study the little-known history of the Hungarian Autonomous Region (HAR), a Soviet-style territorial autonomy that was granted in Romania on Stalin’s personal advice to the Hungarian Székely community in the summer of 1952. The ideological premises of the Hungarian Autonomous Region followed the Bolshevik pattern of territorial autonomy elaborated by Lenin and Stalin in the early 1920s. The Hungarians of Székely Land would become a “titular nationality” provided with extensive cultural rights. Yet, on the other hand, the Romanian central power used the region as an instrument of political and social integration for the Hungarian minority into the communist state. After the Hungarian revolution of 1956, repression affected a great number of Hungarian individuals accused of nationalism and irredentism. In 1960 the HAR also suffered territorial reshaping, its Hungarian-born political leadership being replaced by ethnic Romanian cadres.
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