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Government to revise national curriculum

January 10th, 2020

As the government concludes its revision of the national curriculum, a conservative and a left-wing pundit debate the role of education.

Magyar Nemzet’s Attila Ballai calls for a curriculum that focuses on Hungarian national issues in order to strengthen the national feeling of young students. The pro-government commentator contends that the most important role of education is to inculcate national values. Therefore he thinks that Hungarian pupils should first and foremost familiarize themselves with Hungarian historical, artistic and scientific achievements. Ballai claims that this perspective would help Hungary to reach a ‘spiritual catharsis’ which cannot be achieved by using the old, post-Socialist curricula.

In Népszava, Tamás Beck, on the other hand, finds it nauseous that the government uses culture to promote its political ideology. Without mentioning the planned revision of the state school curriculum, the left-wing columnist accuses the government and its intellectual hinterland of using literature and history to entrench its own nationalist, authoritarian and xenophobic vision. Such efforts, Beck asserts, are both complacent and ridiculous.