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Screening of The Life of an Agent

Arts & Entertainment
Wednesday, January 27, 2016, 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

The Life of an Agent (documentary film, 2004, in Hungarian with English subtitles, directed by Gábor Zsigmond Papp)Hundreds of propaganda and instructional films as well as short and full-length features were produced by the Film Studio of the Ministry of Interior between 1958 and 1988. The films sought to teach the secret police about the best ways to protect the socialist state. Topics included the clandestine house-search, the operative shadowing of select targets, the installation of tapping devices, and the organization of agents and denouncers. The plain and straightforward narration of the films is slightly out of step with their serious patriotic aims, and modern viewers will be astonished by the amount of money, time and energy devoted to a form of ideological education which was both complex and expensive. This selection neatly illustrates how the coercive organization of Kádár's dictatorship worked, and what major motives lay behind it. (OSA) Admission is free! The screening is attached to the lecture series "Counter-Cultures and Power During State Socialism -1960-1990" (in cooperation with OSA Archives)