Frontiere identitare transilvane în revista Kalotaszeg, la începutul secolului al XX-lea / The Identity of Transylvanian Frontiers in the Magazine Kalotaszeg, at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century

Nicoleta Hegedűs

The main goal of this study is to identify components of the discourse on Hungarian identity as it appeared in the Transylvanian journal Kalotaszeg, emphasizing those aspects which describe a regional identity. Reflecting especially the ideological universe of young Károly Kós, the ethnic self-image promoted by this journal contained several features which are specific to a “Transylvanian” identity: a historical tradition of political autonomy, a unique social and religious structure, legislation designed to balance such a heterogeneous society, and its particular geographic position which favoured, along with the political system, the preservation of Hungarian identity in its authentic form, untouched by foreign influences. This “Transylvanism,” although undeniably linked with the interwar period Transylvanism, is not an identity discourse in itself. The “Transylvanian” features present in Kalotaszeg had the purpose of sustaining, especially emotionally, the political and cultural aims of those intellectuals disappointed by the new peripheral status of Transylvania as part of the Hungarian monarchy. The solution proposed by Kós was a change in government politics regarding Transylvania, moving towards firmer support for Transylvanian Magyars in their political fight against non-Magyar Transylvanians in order to consolidate the Hungarian national state. The Transylvanian particularities demonstrated the need for preferential treatment for Transylvanian Magyars in the Hungarian state, although emphasizing them did not mean a desire for autonomy or a distinct identity discourse.

Transylvanian Hungarians, regional identity, Kalotaszeg, dual monarchy, Kós Károly.