November 1996 Issue

Írta: Szombat - Rovat: Archívum, English

November 1996

Is it true that American private foundations are planning to grant 360 million USD to Hungarian Jewry? — an intriguing piece of information which László Seres tried to confirm from various sources, without much success. One possible explanation is that the Claims Conference is trying to secure this amount for Hungarian Jewry — which is unusually large among Hungarian conditions — during its negotiations with Germany.

Hungarian Parliament has approved the setting up of the Hungarian Jewish Heritage Fund which will manage the compensation to the Jewish community. In our article we quote excerpts from the parliamentary debate. The Jewish community will also receive compensation for the buildings nationalized under the Communist regime: one part of the buildings will be returned to the Jewish community, while for others the community will be reimbursed. We publish excerpts from the list detailing these buildings, as well as interviews by Péter Kertész with prominent figures of the Jewish community. Finally, we have included an earlier interview with Éva Ancsel, the renowned philosopher who has recently died, on her childhood and her Jewish roots.

In our section on World Affairs we offer a review of new developments concerning the Jewish deposits in Swiss banks, as well as a report on Jewish life in former Yugoslavia.

In our section on Israel we publish the first part of János Gadó’s travelogue, describing his experiences in yeshivas and the world of Orthodoxy.

Our cultural section begins with Anna Gábor’s study on the distinctive features of Jewish architecture in eastern Hungary, followed by a description of the characteristics of the Jewish calendar, written by Tamás Bíró. Also included in this section is a novel, ‘Herman Wouk’s rebellion’, describing an episode in the novelist’s life: how he ‘converted’ to Orthodoxy a part of the Conservative congregation. Finally, we bid farewell to Emanuel Lévinas, the renowned French Jewish philosopher.