- Date 28th February - 5th April 2020
- Venue Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives, Budapest
Photography © Andrea Bényi / Milán Rácmolnár
Faith – Trust – Secrecy: Religion Through the Lenses of the Secret Police
Hit – Bizalom – Titok: Az üldözött vallásosság képei a titkosszolgálati levéltárakban
Faith and trust are two of the central foundations of religious community but secrecy also represents a common feature of religions throughout history. The secret police, as their name suggests, depended on secrecy practices, whether real or simply performed, and as part of their undercover operations they sought to gain the trust of the communities they wished to infiltrate. Researchers of religion, both during Communism and today, also require the trust of the communities that they research and they practice their own forms of secrecy to protect the identity of research participants. In this exhibition, we present the complex interactions of the secret police with religious groups and those seeking to research them. Faith and trust, whether sustained or broken, and secrecy are interwoven in the images, narratives and testimonies on display.
The material for this exhibition came from two sources. In the first instance, it is based on research conducted in the secret police and other state archives between 2016 and 2019 by a team of researchers of the Hidden Galleries project. This work has been expanded on and placed in dialogue with collaborative work with the Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives on their recently acquired collection of manuscripts and personal books of the Hungarian sociologist of religion, Zsuzsa Horváth.
Faith – Trust – Secrecy, is now available online. Through 360° interior photos, scanned archival documents, and explanatory texts, visitors can explore the complex interactions of the secret police with religious groups and those seeking to research them. The images, narratives, and testimonies on display reveal the interweaving of faith and trust, whether sustained or broken, and secrecy.
kurátor / curator:
ko-kurátor / co-curator:
vezető kutatók / lead researchers:
nemzetközi kutatócsoport / international research team:
OSA levéltári munkatárs / OSA archivist:
archív hangfelvételek / archival sound materials
projektvezető / project principal investigator:
szövegek / texts:
lektorálta / proofreading:
DOBÓ Katalin, ZSÁMBOKI Miklós
grafikai és kiállításdesign / graphic and exhibition design:
képfeldolgozás / image editing:
BEJCZY Sándor, KOPHELYI Dániel
koordinátor / coordinator:
kiállítástechnikusok / exhibition technicians:
sajtó és kommunikáció / pr and communication: