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There Is no Mercy

In memoriam Sándor Loss

Acta Juridica Hungarica
Author: István H. Szilágyi

This article offers a case study from the “law and literature” perspective implying the presentation of the legal material of the Pusoma case, the drama written from it by Elemér Magyar, the documentary fi lm made from the case by Norbert Komenczi, and the film adaptation of the drama directed by Ragályi Elemér. The study concludes with indicating the directions of the further multidisciplinary studies involving literary studies, forensic linguistics, legal anthropology, criminology and legal sociology.

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The critical assessment of the legacy of socialist jurisprudence is amongst one of the most difficult tasks of the post-transitory Central-European legal thinking. This study provides a critical reading of the findings of Hungarian socialist legal sociology with respect to the description and analysis of the socialist legal culture. The discussion starts with the first comprehensive empirical survey on the legal knowledge of the population, designed and carried out by Kálmán Kulcsár in 1965 and ends with András Sajó’s synthesis on the nature of the Hungarian socialist legal culture elaborated in his monograph entitled Illusion and Reality in Law, published in 1986. The paper’s main conclusion is that this two decades long ‘golden age’ of Hungarian legal sociology offers many valid points in both methodological and substantive terms contrary to the fact that the various findings were mainly elaborated under the pressure of official Marxism-Leninism.

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