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Tradition and Discovery: The Polanyi Society Periodical

Volume 25, Issue 2, 1998/1999

Éva Gábor
Pages 5-10
DOI: 10.5840/traddisc1998/199925217

Michael Polanyi And The Liberal Philosophical Tradition In Hungary

This essay describes the Hungarian historical background out of which Michael Polanyi’s lifelong commitment to a liberal, democratic form of government grew. Hungary’s liberal thinkers blossomed in the nineteenth centruy, but their orientation was more political and practical than philosophical. Enlightenment ideas did not penetrate deeply into Hungarian society, which in recent centuries was hampered by its Eastern European and feudal ties. Thus Polanyi felt he had to move to more liberal countries.