László Eörsi is the son of István Eörsi, the writer, poet and translator who was sentenced to eight years for supporting the Hungarian anti-Soviet uprising of 1956 as a journalist. He was later pardoned. Eörsi is now a historian at the Institute for the History of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution in Budapest. He has dedicated numerous works to this topic. He is among the intellectuals active in criticizing the Orbán government. We met with him to review the facts of the 1956 Hungarian revolt at its 60th anniversary and talk with him about its meaning in Hungary today.
It seems that in some way, the memory of the events of 1956 still divides the country politically, as each of the main parties seems to call itself the true heir of the uprising’s protagonists.
The Socialists define themselves more precisely as heirs of Imre Nagy. For the rest, it is typical of them to be silent about what happened in 1956. The Fidesz and Jobbik parties [the far-right xenophobic movement] converge in their way of feeling the heirs of 1956 by completely distorting its meaning, its essence.