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.
The book seems to be an ironic game in which the didactic function of literature is questioned. Yet the situation is more complicated than that: Zsófia Bán seems to inscribe her own ideological messages into the text. Her aim is obviously to teach, not merely to amuse and delight.
I should at first point out that in the two or three years previous, the blows of fate (drought, earthquake, floods) had followed each other in rapid succession. At that time, my father was still an active dancer at the Opera, although it was growing ever harder for him to lift his partners.
Antal Szerb was only seven years Szentkuthy’s senior but the lives of young men are such that with one aged twenty and the other twenty-seven the rift in knowledge, scope and erudition can appear insurmountable. At least this is how it seemed to Miklós Szentkuthy.