Template talk:Hungarian literature

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WikiProject Hungarian culture
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There are several authors among "Other authors" who could be moved to "Famous writers", eg. István Fekete, Ferenc Móra, Ferenc Molnár; while Miklós Zrínyi and Sándor Weöres could be certainly moved to "Famous poets". On the other hand, József Petelei, currently among "Famous writers", is hardly known in Hungary.

However, this categorization seems to be rather subjective to me. A better solution should be applied, please. Adam78 17:28, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Yes, I'm thinking about re-categorization (a better solution: Middle Ages, Enlightenment, XX. century, and so on). Furthermore, would somebody add a Hide/Show toggle to the box, like in Template:Danube? I don't know how to do it. Cserlajos 10:36, 12 July 2006 (UTC)
Finally, there's a better solution & design. Cserlajos 15:21, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

Shouldn't at least the names be in an alphabetical order? Anyway, this list is indeed subjective (e. g. where is Babits or Karinthy or Esterházy or Illyés? And if they are not there, what are Fenyő Miksa, Tóth Árpád and Fekete István doing there? Why isn't Nemere István and Földi Pál mentioned then? The other great problem is that why would Móricz, Gárdonyi, Jókai, Mikszáth be writers of the 19th century, if they lived and wrote in the 20th too? And the creator should take a look at the article regarding Kármán József, the so called "10-16th century" writer...

Anyway, this Template is and always will be useless, because of its subjectivity. I think it should be deleted.--Mathae 20:53, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

I partly agree, though I do not necessarily subscribe to the notion that, as weird as this article is, it should be deleted. There is a simple possibility to avoid POV issues, but it would take a lot of additional work: instead of listing people, how's about considering starting articles on styles, periods, and genres ("Medieval Hungarian literature", "Romanticism in Hungary", stuff like that), adding them to the template instead of their representatives, and list the representatives in the articles instead of here. That way, it can be used as a tool for access, without us having to rely on what was important for a group of wikipedians. Food for though. Dahn 23:37, 3 August 2007 (UTC)
I think this template is not useless, because it gives a rough survey of the most important Hungarian writers and poets. Though I agree that it is always subjective, it would be the same case if we used individual articles on each period. Writing such articles would be a fantastic thing, very useful and important, but it would carry in itself the same subjectivity... Who to mention etc., and it would even raise the problem of valuation, comparison... (eg. let us suppose that we write several paragraphs on a poet, say Babits, and only one paragraph on another, say Kosztolányi: is it valuation of importance, or it is merely accidential? And it is very likely that so to say "less important" poets and writers would simply escape our attention when writing the article (eg. Zoltán Ambrus - whe hardly learn about him in Hungary). But it is always possible to complete such a template if sb is left out who we think is important.
Also in every country's literature, there exist a so called "canon": we consider one part of the literature the "most important" part, which is of course subjective but one cannot help the tradition. I think that such a template could represent this canon (the writers and poets who are the most important in Hungary's literature + completed with some who are maybe not that important at home, but very famous abroad.)
Saying this I am not against writing such articles (Heaven forbid!:)), I only try to defend this template. Everybody who is interested in Hungarian literature can feel free (and is encouraged!) to upgrade and complete the list, adding his or her favourite literary person.
(I also tried to settle the problem of periods (most people mentioned lived in two centuries), making at least two-century-long, overlapping periods, I hope it is satisfactory now.) Pumukli 14:04, 4 August 2007 (UTC)
I'm afraid you missed my point. For one, writing articles does not meet the same problems as creating templates. You can, in theory, write much more in the article, and explain there why a writer is important to a topic through what sources have to say (as opposed to a template, where one will indefinitely list his or her favorite authors, which is bound to be provisional and irrelevant). Additionally, an article does not have to deal with writers that we assume are great, but also deal with secondary figures, events, commentary, chronology, influences, etc.
For this template not to be guided by subjectivity, it would mean, in theory, that it will list all people on the List of Hungarian writers, and probably more. Even if it continues to be guided by subjectivity, the result is bound to be the same: if anybody can add a favorite writer, we will never see the end of it. These two tendencies would make the template both redundant and immense.
However, in articles on, say, styles, one would, at the very least, inevitably limit the listing to people who were both writers and representatives of that style (in theory, that could also mean that you can leave the main template to list the articles on genres, and create other templates to list the writers in the genre - or even people of all artistic mediums connected with the style, from writers to architects to decorators).
Also, a hypothetical article on, say, "Romanticism in Hungary" would be useful in itself, and would inevitably be guided by sources, instead of by what editors feel should be included. This means several things: sources are bound to cover the same the ground, and the additional detail each of them provides can only add to the article; WP:OR prevents editors from using sources that do not discuss the topic of the article (for example, a source on x poet to be used in that context would have to mention that the x poet is a Romantic - not that he is great, not that he is important, but that he is relevant to what is being discussed). Thus, the question of "how many paragraphs" is also one mostly left to sources - more ample discussions on the work of individual writers would belong in the biographical articles, while the articles would serve to explain their importance to the style/genre/period (which is usually easy to asses once citing sources becoames a priority in adding text). Even if there is some room left for subjectivity (and my experience tells me that there isn't much, were this to be done properly), the difference in quality is self-evident: the alternative is simply listing what goes one through people's heads, without even a way to explain for the reader why the choices were made. Dahn 14:32, 4 August 2007 (UTC)
Allow me to highlight this point: "adding his or her favourite literary person" is contrary to the spirit of wikipedia, since it encourages fandom over both relevancy and usefulness. Dahn 14:37, 4 August 2007 (UTC)

I understand what you say, though I don't agree on every point. You also missed my point: such a template should represent the tradition, the list of poets and writers who are considered the most important literary people in Hungary and in the world. (I admit I confused you: I wrote everybody should complete the list with favourites. You are right, this is not a good idea, and I also contradicted myself, sorry.) But I maintanin that though such template is subjective, it can be useful. I only wanted to save the template. Those articles are very important in themselves: I agree, we should start writing them. But this does not mean that we should delete something which can easily show eg. the contemporaries of an author at the end of the article. I think it's important. I wonder what do others think. Pumukli 11:26, 5 August 2007 (UTC)


The pictures[edit]

Is there any reason why the pictures keep changing? I can picture that it was considered a good idea to represent all major writers at some point, but the result is nothing short of weird. What I would suggest instead is to find some emblematic figure, some allegory of some sort, an iconic book illustration (as seen on the project template just above, but you could get even more creative and resourceful than that), a neutral but relevant symbol, or at least a collective portrait. You could perhaps even create a small collage of PD images, as seen on Hungarian people. Or even nothing at all, if you cannot decide. Dahn 23:37, 3 August 2007 (UTC)