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  • Author: Ágnes Vass x
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If Yes, Why Not? Minority Language Use and Accommodation of Minority Language Rights in Slovakia

Abstract

This article gives an overview of the actual situation of language rights in Slovakia, focusing mainly on the minority language usage. The status of minority languages in Slovakia is still a politicized question and a series of conflicts arose especially between Slovak political elites and the representatives of ethnic Hungarians because of the controversial legislation of minority language rights. Slovakia was subjected in the field of minority protection and heavily criticized during the adoption of the State Language Law. Strict regulations on the use of state language have negative effects on the use of minority languages as well. In spite of the fact that in 1999 the Law on Use of Minority Languages was adopted and Slovakia ratified all of the international agreements in this field, the problem of minority language usage was not solved. This legal vacuum motivated the Hungarian civil sphere to take alternative actions in order to ensure bilingualism and promote the use of minority languages in official communication. Summarizing the legal accommodation of minority language rights, this paper is devoted to examine a recently less-observed civil activism supporting the use of regional languages in Slovakia.

Open access
The Extended Nation as a Political Project – Hungarian Diaspora Living in Western Canada

Abstract

Policy towards Hungarians living in neighbouring countries has been a central issue for Hungarian governments, yet Hungarian diaspora living mainly in Western Europe and North America have received very little attention. This has changed after the 2010 landslide victory of Fidesz. The new government introduced a structured policy focused on engaging Hungarian diaspora, largely due to the nationalist rhetoric of the governing party. The article argues that this change reflects a turn of Hungarian nationalism into what Ragazzi and Balalowska (2011) have called post-territorial nationalism, where national belonging becomes disconnected from territory. It is because of this new conception of Hungarian nationalism that we witness the Hungarian government approach Hungarian communities living in other countries in new ways while using new policy tools: the offer of extraterritorial citizenship; political campaigns to motivate the diaspora to take part in Hungarian domestic politics by voting in legislative elections; or the never-before-seen high state budget allocated to support these communities. Our analysis is based on qualitative data gathered in 2016 from focus group discussions conducted in the Hungarian community of Western Canada to understand the effects of this diaspora politics from a bottom-up perspective. Using the theoretical framework of extraterritorial citizenship, external voting rights and diaspora engagement programmes, the paper gives a brief overview of the development of the Hungarian diaspora policy. We focus on how post-territorial nationalism of the Hungarian government after 2010 effects the ties of Hungarian communities in Canada with Hungary, how the members of these communities conceptualise the meaning of their “new” Hungarian citizenship, voting rights and other diaspora programmes. We argue that external citizenship and voting rights play a crucial role in the Orbán government’s attempt to govern Hungarian diaspora communities through diaspora policy.

Open access
Chalk-induced Lung Fibrosis — Case Report

Abstract

Introduction: Our article underlines the importance of a good professional anamnesis, knowing all the chemical components with which the patient had been exposed to during her active life as a teacher.

Case presentation: A 64-year-old female patient, teacher for 27 years, who had been retired for six years, presented cough with white phlegm and shortness of breath occurring during physical exertion, diffuse thoracic pain, and fatigue. Several lung functional tests were performed, which established the diagnosis of irreversible minor mixed ventilatory dysfunction. In order to establish the etiology of the patient’s symptoms, multiple clinical, laboratory, imaging, and functional investigations were performed including a chest radiograph, pulmonary functional testing, bronchial reversibility testing, a thoracic CT scan, fibrobronchoscopy, alveolar-capillary diffusion capacity measurement, otorhinolaryngology examination, thyroid ultrasound, as well as a cardiological consult. Finally, a positive diagnosis was established: bronchial hyperreactivity syndrome, chalk dust-induced diffuse pulmonary fibrosis.

Conclusion: An essential part of clinical practice is a proper anamnesis, including detailed information on the professional history and exposure, as well as the composition of the dust/particles with which the patient had been in contact with.

Open access
Effectiveness of Bronchoalveolar Lavage in Diagnosis and Evolution of Coal Worker’s Pneumoconiosis — Case Report

Abstract

Introduction: Our article offers a deeper insight into an important occupational disease — coal workers' pneumoconiosis, with all its diagnosis difficulties, treatment steps, and strategies.

Case presentation: A 33-year-old male patient, smoker, with 16 years of outside exposure to coal dust, presents shortness of breath and cough, which existed 4 months prior to presentation and progressed in time. The first chest X-ray has raised differential diagnosis difficulties with miliary tuberculosis, despite the patient’s exposure history. All the investigation procedures performed afterwards (clinical examination, fibrobronchoscopy with microlavage and cytological examination, chest computed tomography, and routine laboratory investigations) were not enough to provide a certain and final diagnosis. Exploratory thoracotomy with lung biopsy was needed, and its findings started to sustain the professional disease diagnosis that had already taken shape. To exclude a disease which can evolve hand in hand, but also as a therapeutic application, we decided that a whole lung lavage was needed.

Conclusion: Although whole lung lavage could not be accomplished completely, the performed right middle lobe bronchoalveolar lavage had a huge impact, not only on the patient’s symptomatology, but also on the paraclinical results.

Open access