About the Chiefs 2017


Editor-in-Chief - Harald Wydra

Harald Wydra is a university lecturer in politics at the University of Cambridge and a fellow of St Catharine's College. His general research interests include political anthropology, symbolic politics, politics of memory, and methodological approaches to the understanding of uncertainty in politics.

He is a founding editor of the academic journal International Political Anthropology. Wydra is the author of the 2007 book Communism and the Emergence of Democracy. He is editor with Ágnes Horváth and Bjørn Thomassen for the forthcoming book called Breaking Boundaries: Varieties of Liminality.

Editor-in-Chief - Ágnes Horváth


Horvath received a Doctorate in Law and an MA in Sociology (from the Budapest University of Economics) and a PhD in Social and Political Sciences from the European University Institute in Florence. She has taught in Departments of Politics, Sociology and History in Budapest, Cork and Milan.


The concepts that Horvath has developed in her publications include: Alchemy, Trickster and the technology. She has used case studies such as Metallurgy, Palaeolithic and Mesolithic paintings which analyse the transformative nature of technology in a manner that ties together political anthropology and comparative history. The main theme in her research is the concept of integrity and how this is threatened by technological change. She identifies the source of this as the extension of the division of labour, which is driven by technological innovation, which results in the growing fragmentation of social life. Additional themes in her research are: mimesis, schismogenetic moments, trickster formations, pilgrimage and long-distance walking as identity change.


Horvath began her research with ethnographic research and sociological data collection in the Communist party apparatus in the 22 district level Communist party organisations of Budapest (1987–88), and was extended in 1989 with a study of mayors in Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia (1991-2). Now, her research is multidisciplinary in character, drawing on anthropology, philosophy and sociology, and she is influenced by scholars and authors such Plato, Max Weber, Martin Heidegger, Bruno Latour and Arpad Szakolczai.



  1. Modernism and Charisma: The Role of the Liminal in the Dynamics of Authorities

  2. Breaking Boundaries: Varieties of Liminality

  3. The Gravity of Eros in the Contemporary

  4. Plato’s Statesman: The Politics of Limit and Liminality

  5. Reclaiming Beauty: Collected Essays in Political Anthropology Vol. I

  6. Gli interpreti degli interpreti: l’Ione di Platone oggi

  7. The Dissolution of Communist Power: The Case of Hungary

  8. Senkiföldjén: A politikai instruktorok tevékenységéröl az állampártban (On the no man’s land: The activity of political instructors in the state party)

Articles and chapters

  1. The Fascination with Eros: The Role of Passionate Interests in Communism

  2. Schismogenesis, Liminality and Pathogenesis: a case study

  3. Silence and Obscurity of the Eastern European Revolutions

  4. A Népszolgálat a Szolgálat és a Nép között (The Problem of Serving the People)

  5. Beauty and Its Forgery

  6. Gabriel Tarde’s Underground Man

  7. Tarde’s ultimate paradox, or realism confronting erratic understanding

  8. Regression into Technology, or the First Mask

  9. Pulcinella, or the metaphysics of the nulla: In between politics and theatre

  10. Liminality and the unreal class of the image-making craft

  11. On liminality

  12. Néhány szó Brandolini Dialógus-áról (A few words on Brandolini’s Dialogue)

  13. Conclusione’ to Gli interpreti degli interpreti: l’Ione di Platone oggi

  14. L’interprete del’incanto divino’ (The interpreter of divine enchantment)

  15. Introduzione’ to Gli interpreti degli interpreti: l’Ione di Platone oggi (The interpreter of interpreters: Plato’s Ion today)

  16. What Kind of Political Anthropology? Turning Iconoclasm into Golden Age

  17. Az erénnyel teli tudás antropológiájához’ (On the anthropology of knowledge filled with virtue)

  18. Mimetic Errors in Liminal Schismogenesis: On the Political Anthropology of the Trickster

  19. Mythology and the Trickster: Interpreting Communism

  20. The Trickster Motive in Renaissance Political Thought

  21. Tricking into the Position of the Outcast: A Case Study in the Emergence and Effects of Communist Power

  22. The Political Psychology of Trickster-Clown: An Analytical Experiment around Communism as a Myth

  23. Du discours sur la société civile et l'auto-élimination du parti

  24. The Discourse of Civil Society and the Self-Elimination of the Party

  25. Political Instructors and the Decline of Communism in Hungary: Apparatus, Nomenclatura and the Issue of Legacy

  26. Information Management in Bolshevik-type Party States: A Version of the Information Society

  27. The Dual Power of the State-Party and Its Grounds

  28. A Sweet and Sour Victory in Eastern Europe

  29. Senkiföldjén’ (On the no man's land)

  30. A párt különös hatalma (The peculiar power of the party)

  31. The concentration of power and the self-defending society: Elements of a conceptual framework in the Works of Karl Polanyi and István Bibó

  32. Életesélyek aszimmetriája: Anthony Giddens struktura-elmeletéröl (The asymmetry of life chances: on the structuration theory of Anthony Giddens)

  33. Az egyoldalú hatalomkoncentráció és a társadalom védettsége Polányi Károly és Bibó István elméletrendszerében’ (The one-sided concentration of power and the self-defending society in the theoretical systems of Karl Polányi and István Bibó)

  34. Osztályelemzés: Vélemények és viták’ (Class analysis: opinions and debates)

  35. 'Közönyösek': Csövesekkel készitett interjúk feldolgozása’ (‘Apathetics’: A study of high-school drop-outs based on in-depth interviews)

Editorial Assistant - Diletta Tonatto

Diletta Tonatto holds honours degrees from the University of Sydney, Australia. She Specialised on social movements and the role of the Internet (online social platforms) in political mobilization. 

She wrote her dissertation titled "The Rise of Grillism: Fighting the Italian Malaise through the Internet". 


Working Languages: Italian, English, Spanish

Acting Editor - Camil F. Roman

Camil Francisc Roman has received his doctorate with a thesis on the political anthropology of the French Revolution in the Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Cambridge, 2017. He is currently Lecturer in Political Science at John Cabot University (Rome) and acting editor of International Political Anthropology. He has a cross- and interdisciplinary focus on modern revolutions as symbolic and experiential processes of transforming modes of consciousness. The long-term goal of his research is to contribute to our understanding of European modernity. His latest articles include “The revolutionary and Napoleonic wars in the Prussian political imaginary: a politico-anthropological genealogy of the ‘special’ German–French relations”, in Journal of International Relations and Development (2016), and “Liminality, the execution of Louis XVI and the rise of terror during the French Revolution”, in Breaking Boundaries: Varieties of Liminality (Berghahn, 2015).

Associate Editors- Tom Boland & John O' Brien

Tom Boland lectures in Sociology at Waterford Institute of Technology. His core interests are in social theory, historical sociology and the sociology of critique. Recent articles have appeared in journals of sociology, history, anthropology and philosophy. His monograph Critique as a Modern Social Phenomenon was published in 2013 by Mellen Press. With Ray Griffin he is author of The Sociology of Unemployment (Manchester University Press, 2015).

John O’Brien holds a PhD in Sociology from University College Cork, Ireland, and studied social science in University College Dublin. He is a Lecturer in Sociology in Waterford Institute of Technology. His current research focuses on alcohol consumption, intoxication and the night-time economy, and collective memory and commemoration. 

Web Editor- Janos Mark Szakolczai

Janos Mark Szakolczai is a PhD candidate in University College Cork. His field of interest includes criminology, anthropology and sociology.

Contact us


  • Florence, Italy,
  • Cambridge University, U.K.
  • University College Cork, Ireland

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