Last updated

Vasárnapi Kör
Typeintellectual discussion group
Legal statusinformal
Founding members

The Sonntagskreis (Hungarian : Vasárnapi Kör, "Sunday Circle") was an intellectual discussion group in Budapest, Hungary, between 1915 and 1918. The main focus of the group was on the relationship between ideas and the social and historical context of those ideas, a line of thought that led towards the later concepts of "social history of art" and "sociology of knowledge". [1]


The Sonntagskreis group

The Sonntagskreis was founded in the autumn of 1915 by Béla Balázs, Lajos Fülep, Arnold Hauser, György Lukács, and Károly (Karl) Mannheim; in December of that year Balázs noted the success of the group in his diary. [2] Others members of the group at various times included Frigyes (Frederick) Antal, Béla Fogarasi, Tibor Gergely, Edit Gyömrői, Edit Hajós, György Káldor  [ hu ], Juliska Láng  [ hu ], Anna Lesznai, Ernő Lörsy  [ hu ], Mihály (Michael) Polányi, László Radványi, Emma Ritoók, [3] Anna Schlamadinger, Ervin Šinko, Vilmos Szilasi, Károly Tolnay (Charles de Tolnay) and János (Johannes) Wilde. [4] Admission to the group required the assent of all existing members; members could bring guests to meetings. [5] The group generally met on Sunday afternoons at Balázs's flat, and discussed literature and philosophy. [4] [6]

The Free School of Humanist Studies

In the spring of 1917 members of the group founded the Szellemi Tudományok Szabad Iskolájána, or "Free School of Humanist Studies", which for two semesters in 1917 and 1918 organised lectures in a school building in Budapest. [4] Guest lecturers included Béla Bartók, Zoltán Kodály and Ervin Szabó. [7]

Related Research Articles

Karl Mannheim was an influential Hungarian sociologist during the first half of the 20th century. He is a key figure in classical sociology, as well as one of the founders of the sociology of knowledge. Mannheim is best known for his book Ideology and Utopia (1929/1936), in which he distinguishes between partial and total ideologies, the latter representing comprehensive worldviews distinctive to particular social groups, and also between ideologies that provide outdated support for existing social arrangements, and utopias, which look to the future and threaten to transform a society.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Béla Balázs</span>

Béla Balázs, born Herbert Béla Bauer, was a Hungarian film critic, aesthetician, writer and poet of Jewish heritage. He was a proponent of formalist film theory.

The origins of Hungarian opera can be traced to the late 18th century, with the rise of imported opera and other concert styles in cities like Pozsony, Kismarton, Nagyszeben and Budapest. Operas at the time were in either the German or Italian style. The field Hungarian opera began with school dramas and interpolations of German operas, which began at the end of the 18th century. School dramas in places like the Pauline School in Sátoraljaújhely, the Calvinist School in Csurgó and the Piarist School in Beszterce.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">MTK Budapest</span>

Magyar Testgyakorlók Köre is a multi-sports club from Budapest, founded in 1888. It has sections for football, handball, basketball, volleyball, futsal, ice hockey, water polo, cycling, gymnastics, athletics, fencing, canoeing, boxing, wrestling, swimming, rowing, karate, taekwondo, sailing, speed skating, skiing, table tennis, tennis and chess.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Farkasréti Cemetery</span>

Farkasréti Cemetery or Farkasrét Cemetery is one of the most famous cemeteries in Budapest. It opened in 1894 and is noted for its extensive views of the city.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Franz Liszt Academy of Music</span> Concert hall and music conservatory in Budapest, Hungary

The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music is a music university and a concert hall in Budapest, Hungary, founded on November 14, 1875. It is home to the Liszt Collection, which features several valuable books and manuscripts donated by Franz Liszt upon his death, and the AVISO studio, a collaboration between the governments of Hungary and Japan to provide sound recording equipment and training for students. The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music was founded by Franz Liszt himself.

Frederick Antal, born Frigyes Antal, later known as Friedrich Antal, was a Hungarian art historian, particularly known for his contributions to the social history of art.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Klári Tolnay</span> Hungarian actress

Klári Tolnay was a Hungarian actress. She received the Kossuth Prize in 1951 and 1952.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ilona Duczyńska</span>

Ilona Duczynska, was a Polish-Hungarian-Canadian revolutionary, journalist, translator, engineer, and historian. Her husband was Karl Polanyi and her daughter is Kari Polanyi Levitt.

Arnold Hauser was a Hungarian-German art historian and sociologist who was perhaps the leading Marxist in the field. He wrote on the influence of change in social structures on art.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pál Lukács</span> Hungarian violinist and music pedagogue (1919–1981)

Pál Lukács was a Hungarian viola virtuoso, concert and recording artist, and music educator.

György Lukács was a Hungarian Marxist philosopher and literary critic.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Balázs Kocsár</span> Hungarian orchestral and operatic conductor

Balázs Kocsár is a Hungarian orchestral and operatic conductor. He was born in 1963 in Budapest. His father Miklós Kocsár is a composer awarded the Kossuth Prize. He studied composition at Béla Bartók Vocational School of Music. Then he entered the prestigious Franz Liszt Academy of Music to study choir conducting under István Párkai which was followed by studies in orchestral conducting under the guidance of Ervin Lukács. He graduated with distinction in 1991. His studies were continued at Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien under Professor Karl Österreicher. He also participated in master classes led by Helmuth Rilling, Jorma Panula, Moshe Atzmon and Péter Eötvös.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Alabert Fogarasi</span>

Alabert Fogarasi, also known as Béla Fogarasi was a Hungarian philosopher and politician.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Anna Lesznai</span>

Anna Lesznai was a Hungarian-born American writer, painter, designer, and key figure in the Hungarian avant-garde.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ilona Kurdy</span>

Ilona Kurdy was a painter and sculptor.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Galileo Circle</span>

The Galileo Circle was an atheist-materialist student organization that functioned in Budapest between 1908 and 1919. Their center was located at the Anker Köz in Terézváros, Budapest. The circle had several subgroups with four different world views: the radical liberals, the Marxists, the anarcho-syndicalists and the socialists. However they had common goals, which included the protection of free scientific research and thinking at universities, the cultivation of social sciences, the social assistance of poor students, the spread of anti-clericalist and atheist views, the support of anti-nationalism and promoting internationalism, the propagation of anti-alcoholism, the opposition to large estates and the "reorientation of Hungarian social perception".

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Iván Vitányi</span> Hungarian essayist, sociologist, and politician (1925–2021)

Iván Vitányi was a Hungarian sociologist, essayist, dance historian, philosopher of art and politician. He was a member of the National Assembly of Hungary from 1990 to 2014.


  1. Paul Stirton (2006). "The 'Budapest School' of Art History – from a British Perspective", lecture in Kultúra, nemzet, identitás a VI. Nemzetközi Hungarológiai Kongresszuson, Debrecen, 23–26 August 2006. Accessed May 2013
  2. Mary Gluck (1985) Georg Lukács and His Generation, 1900-1918. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. pp. 14–16
  3. Judith Marcus (1987). Georg Lukács and Thomas Mann: A Study in the Sociology of Literature. Univ of Massachusetts Press. pp. 198–. ISBN   0-87023-486-2.
  4. 1 2 3 Mario D. Fenyo (1987) "Literature and Political Change: Budapest, 1908-1918". Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, New Series 77(6): 1-156 (subscription required)
  5. David Kettler (Winter 1986) "The Romance of Modernism" (review of Mary Gluck (1985) Georg Lukács and His Generation, 1900-1918). The Canadian Journal of Sociology / Cahiers canadiens de sociologie, 11 (4): 443-455 (subscription required)
  6. Zoltán Novák (1979) A Vasárnap Társaság. Budapest: Kossuth Könyvkiadó, ISBN   963-09-1245-7, back cover
  7. Éva Karádi, Erzsébet Vezér (1980) A Vasárnapi Kör, cited in: Peter Weibel (ed.) (2005) Beyond art: a third culture; a comparative study in cultures, art, and science in 20th century Austria and Hungary Wien; New York, NY: Springer, ISBN   9783211245620. pp. 449–454.

Further reading