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  • Abstract of TALK by Prof Attila Kiss 14 December 2020 at 8.15pm

     PROGRAMME for Autumn 2020 –  Spring 2021


    Professor Attila Kiss :                December 14 at 8.15pm

    University of Szeged, Department of English

    Research Group for Cultural Iconology and Semiography (REGCIS)


    TALK :  Herder, National Identity, and the Hungarian Cult of Shakespeare

    From the early nineteenth century on, the Shakespeare name and brand have been disseminated and deployed as the standard against which the cultural maturity of a nation was to be measured in a world which was witnessing a growing dominance of Anglo-Saxon powers. Several poststructuralist critical orientations have mapped out the interrelationships and antagonisms of cultural imperialism, canonization and ideological technologies of authorship, including the formation and the use of the cult of Shakespeare. Two names, Herder and Shakespeare, coin a very special couple in the history of Hungary under the suppressive reign of the Habsburg Empire at the turn of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. I would like to elaborate on this peculiar pair and their influence on the emergent Hungarian national identity, which repeatedly had to define and defend itself in opposition to the higher Austrian powers. My contention is that the history of Shakespeare’s reception in Hungary is demonstrative of the agency of the name of the author, and we can throw new light on this specific Foucauldian author function if we approach it through the presence and impact of Herder on the cultural attempts at self-definition in Hungary. This method will help us arrive at a more complete understanding of the cultural logic of the cult of Shakespeare in Hungary, and literary cults in general.




    Please Register for a link to attend this talk on virtual technology

    contact :- Professor Rowland Wymer @ ARU