The necessity of planned urban development might seem self-evident, but in reality is far from being so – particularly in former socialist countries turned into EU Member States such as Hungary or Romania. In Hungary, for instance, prior to EU accession, there was no generally accepted public opinion supporting the necessity of a planned urban development controlled by the public sector. However, the substantial resources – that in Hungary, e.g., involve impressive amounts – placed at the disposal of urban development within the framework of European Union development policy are not sufficient by themselves to answer the question as to why planned urban development is truly necessary. Based on the most recent research results on the topic and some relevant earlier Hungarian and foreign studies lesser-known in Central Europe, the present paper seeks to answer this question. It analyses the international literature as well as certain Western European, Hungarian, and Romanian cases in order to define the general objectives of urban planning and uses them as a starting-point to demonstrate the necessity of planned urban development.
Referring to Fustel de Coulanges’ distinction of urbs and civitas, the article discusses political theory and practice in 16th-17th-century Poland. While in western Europe an important shift in the notion of politics took place, and the civitas aspect of cities deteriorated as they were conquered by new centralized nation-states, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth was an attempt to recreate the ancient and mediaeval concept of civitas – a community of free citizens, actively participating in the government – at the state level. As its proponents, such as Stanisław Sarnicki, argued, Poland was to become a city rather than a state, and so the theoretical justification, political practice, and eventual failure of this project is an interesting, though extreme, historical example of difficulties embedded in a more universal ‘quest for the political form that would permit the gathering of the energies of the city while escaping the fate of the city’ (Manent 2013: 5).
The cultural networks connecting Hungary to other parts of Europe, having developed in the late mediaeval period, worked on in the 16th century, and new points of contact were also formed after the Reformation. The most important elements in this network were the German-speaking citizens of the towns of the Hungarian Kingdom. This paper focuses on Leonhard Stöckel, born in the free royal town of Bardejov, Upper Hungary, who studied in Wittenberg and then returned home and headed the urban school according to Melanchthon’s model. Besides teaching, he wrote several works, mainly for educational purposes, most of which were published only after his death, while a smaller part remained in manuscript form. From the chapters of his works, it can be clearly seen what he thought of governance, of the tasks and responsibility of the magistrate.
This paper contains the analysis of employment in the settlements of Harghita County, using the GIS (Geographic Information System) analysis, Spearman’s correlation, principal component analysis, and the cluster analysis methods. Based on the database of a set of indicators which describe the demographic, employment, and enterprise dimensions, remarkable spatial differences were observed between the settlements. The principal objectives of the county development plan regarding the employment were analysed, and a discussion took place on the possibilities of employment development in Harghita County.
Virginia Woolf and Karel Čapek produced direct responses to the British Empire Exhibition in the forms of – in Woolf’s case – a scathing essay entitled ‘Thunder at Wembley’ and – in Čapek’s case – a (P)OstModernist travelogue later published as part of ‘Letters from England’ translated into English in 1925 and banned by the Nazis as well as the Communists. This research paper juxtaposes modernity in Central Europe with its ‘Other’ – that in Western Europe – by exploring Woolf and Čapek’s durée réelle between 1910 and 1924. It offers an analysis of Karel Čapek’s (P)OstModern legacies, placing Prague right on the modernist centre stage. The socio-political contribution of Central European regional modernism in Čapek’s work is increasingly vital to the contemporary Europe of Brexit and refugee and migrant crises, and beyond.
The basis of the connection between analytic philosophy and architecture theory was developed in the interwar period. The results of analytic philosophy – especially the neo-positivism of Vienna Circle – and modern, functionalist architecture theory were utilized in an interdisciplinary approach. The comparison was based on language puzzles, science-based building processes, the method of justification and verification, and designing an artificial language in order to express the theoretical (philosophical) and the practical (architectural) approach as well. The functionality was based on the modern way of architectural thinking that relied on the results of Carnapian neo-positivism. Interpreting modern architecture is possible by referring to the keywords of logical positivism: empiricism, logic, verification, unity of language, and science.
In my paper, I first list the bases of the comparison between the philosophy of the Vienna Circle and the architecture theory of the interwar period – the Bauhaus and Le Corbusier. In the 2nd and 3rd sections, I show the dialectical succession between form and function. After that, I discuss the aesthetic verification of the turn of the century and the scientific justification of the interwar period. I focus on the interwar period with the positivist approach and the theory of the ‘new architecture’. I emphasize the importance of the language of science and the machine paradigm – in contrast to historicism.
The critique of the city is an almost obligatory cliché of the 20thcentury cultural criticism. This paper offers a parallel critical analysis of the conceptions of American ecologist Lewis Mumford and Hungarian historian István Hajnal. They were contemporaries, and their approaches had been inspired by interwar cultural criticism. Mumford did not hate the city: it was, for him, the engine of history, a reservoir of cultural creativeness. The theory of Hajnal, from many aspects, runs parallel with Mumford’s – moreover, the Hungarian historian gives a detailed theory on the types of European city. What connects them is an ecological approach.