This article analyzes the social history of the revolutionary and counterrevolutionary struggles in postarmistice Hungary as they played out in the Hungarian domestic sphere. Using court cases and statements made to legal aid bureaus in Budapest, it examines how elites and the middle class reasserted their social and political power by using legal channels and the threat of denunciation to seek revenge and retribution on domestic employees and neighbors. It also explores how revolutionary and counterrevolutionary politics affected conflicts over housing in Budapest. By exploring the gendered nature of transitional and retroactive justice in counterrevolutionary Hungary, this article shows the blurring of the line between personal and political violence.It also demonstrates that women played an important role in counterrevolutionary politics by assisting state efforts to reassert traditional social and political hierarchies in the domestic sphere.
Emily R. Gioielli is a visiting assistant professor of European history at the College of William & Mary. She received her PhD in comparative history at Central European University in Budapest. Her dissertation, “White Misrule: Terror and Political Violence during Hungary’s Long World War I,” is a social and international history of counterrevolutionary violence in Hungary following the end of World War I. She has been awarded fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena, and the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, and is currently a book review editor of East Central Europe. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org