Ervin Lázár is the creator of a genre we may safely call
Central European folk surrealism, which takes on the quality of a
hallucinatory exploration into that part of the soul where beauty, hope,
and yearning live in close proximity with the harsh realities of life.
"'Mother, I said they took everyone away, they raped every woman! You said they took away women here, too.’ ’Yes, but only those who were whores. You are not one,’ my mother said. They she threw herself on me and begged, ‘My dear, tell me it is not true!’ ‘All right,’ I said, ‘it is not true. They took me away just to nurse the sick.’"
" In Russia, women are considered the better, more noble half of society, and I attempt to illustrate and emphasize this in my work." – Russian author Ludmila Ulitskaya spoke with us at the Budapest Book Festival, where she was this year's Guest of Honour.
"The tram came to a stop and I flung what was left of my Multi on the tracks opposite. To hell with Germanic tidiness; I was glad to live in Hungary, where, even if the day-to-day struggle for cash was all-consuming, at least I was free to compensate with such a cynical gesture knowing that others couldn’t care less, and that if they did care, most likely they were on my side; for we were all in the same creaky, splintered wooden boat." – Adventures of a New Jersey-born Hungarian American in post-socialist Hungary.
It was 1956. In those days, nobody stole. The murderers who had left prison did not murder, the robbers did not rob. The moral level of the entire nation remained on a higher plane, everyone rose above themselves. In this aspect, 1956 was not just a republican moment in the life of Hungary, but an invigourating moral celebration as well.