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The Neoliberal Reconfiguration of the Hungarian Political Economy, 1990–2006

  • Adam Fabry
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter examines the methods by which neoliberal ideas and practices were consolidated in Hungary between 1990 and 2006, as well as the variegated impact of neoliberal restructuring on society. Challenging accounts of neoliberal transformation as a relatively harmonious process, the chapter argues for a more critical understanding of this process, which stresses the importance of both economic and political coercion, as well as the extensive investment in the ideological underpinnings of neoliberalism by both external organisations, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, the European Union (EU), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), multinational corporations (MNCs), and neoliberal think tanks, and domestic economic and political elites. Analysing the politico-economic trajectory of Hungary from 1990 to the mid-2000s, the chapter shows that, although the country did become a ‘poster boy’ of neoliberal transformation in the region, its emergent regime of accumulation was fraught with contradictions and limitations. These limitations were revealed during the massive anti-government protests that rocked Hungary during the autumn of 2006.

Keywords

Foreign direct investment Hungary Labour Neoliberalism Privatisation Uneven development 

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Authors and Affiliations

  • Adam Fabry
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Study on Culture and Society National Scientific and Technical Research CouncilNational University of CórdobaCórdobaArgentina

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