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Photo: “Évértékelő 2020 (5)“, by Elekes Andor licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0. Hue modified from the original

Balogh, Lídia, András L. Pap, and Emese Pásztor. “Hungary: The Concept of Family Within the Framework of “Illiberal Democracy”.” In Normativity and Diversity in Family Law, pp. 195-225. Springer, Cham, 2022.


The report on Hungary identifies the current government’s political approach, self-labelled as “illiberal democracy” and manifested in a new Constitution and a Civil Code, as a decisive factor regarding family politics and the legal framework regulating various aspects of family life and private life. The authors find that these family policies/frameworks (directly or indirectly) create an unequal situation for those who do not live according to the government’s preferred family model. This model means, first of all, a family which is based on the marriage of a man and a woman, who raise together their (biological) children, preferably under middle-class socioeconomic conditions. Those who do not fit into this model (cohabiting partners, single parents, same-sex couples, families living in poverty, etc.) may find themselves in a disfavoured “minority situation” despite the fact that these groups of individuals/families constitute a significant part of Hungarian society.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.