László Rajk

is an Hungarian architect and designer. He is the son of László Rajk, the former communist foreign minister and most prominent victim of the Rákosi show trials of 1949. In 1975, László Rajk jr. joined the underground political movement in Hungary and as an architect he was a member of the avantgarde movement. In 1981 he co-founded the independent AB Publishing House and in 1988 he was one of the founders of the liberal party Alliance of Free Democrats. After the first free elections in 1990 he served six years in the Hungarian Parliament.


In a “New Year’s appeal”, thirteen intellectuals and public figures who opposed Hungary’s communist regime in the 1970s outline their concerns about Hungary’s new constitution and call on Europe to help halt a slide towards a new dictatorship.

The Slovak author and journalist Martin M. Simecka and Hungarian architect and former samizdat publisher László Rajk are not only former dissidents of the younger generation, but also the sons of well-known persecuted communists. László Rajk sr. was the most prominent victim of the Rákosi show trials of 1949; the writer Milan Simecka sr. began his career in the Czechoslovak Communist Party and became a dissident after 1968. In the first debate in the Eurozine series “Europe talks to Europe”, held in Budapest, they discussed the still unanswered questions surrounding the involvement of their fathers’ generation in post-war communism, and the failings of today’s debate about the past in the former communist countries. Moderated by Éva Karádi, editor of Magyar Lettre Internationale.

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