Historical-Structural Analysis of Linguistic Development of the Slavic Population of Transcarpathia During the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy (1867–1918)

Megjelent Fedinec Csilla, Csernicskó István: Історично-структурні чинники мовного розвитку Закарпаття в період австро-угорської монархії (1867–1918) [Historical-Structural Analysis of Linguistic Development of the Slavic Population of Transcarpathia During the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy (1867–1918) c. tanulmánya az Ukraine: Cultural Heritage, National Identity, Statehood c. folyóiratban: ITT.

Using the historical-structural method, the article outlines the linguistic processes of the Transcarpathian region during the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. For a long time in Europe, the national language and its codified dialect were not a defining element of people’s identification, much more important was, for example, religious affiliation. However, when language became the most important symbol of national identity, the international language ideology was replaced by vernacularization and the ideology of linguistic nationalism, and then local national languages came to the fore. In Hungary, as part of this long process, Latin and German were gradually replaced by Hungarian in those spheres of public life that were under the direct influence of the state (for example, administrative management and education). A sharp conflict between the Hungarian state and the minorities did not arise until the central government wanted to extend the scope of the use of the Hungarian language to the internal linguistic sphere of the non-Hungarian population. Based on this historical framework, a set of different factors that influenced language policy in the region is analyzed, namely the concept of language policy of the state, the ethno-political features of the region, and the local elites’ own cultural and national movement. Parallel to the processes of national awakening among Carpatho-Ruthenians, the desire to use their native language grew stronger, and the national and language movements of other Slavic nations living on Hungarian territory, including Serbs and Slovaks, were an example. The evolution of national ideas was also helped by the fact that Enlightenment rationalism was replaced by Romanticism, which contributed to the spread of national romanticism and the «finding» of one’s own language and popular culture. It is accepted that Hungarian linguistic and national policy was subordinated to the task of preserving territories: the Hungarian government sought to keep the national regions, including Transcarpathia, within Hungary by expanding their national-cultural and linguistic rights.