40. évfolyam, 1994. 1. szám


In memory of József Antall, the librarian


The study analyzes the career of the Hungarian prime minister, deceased on 12 December 1993, as a librarian between 1963 and 1990. József Antall spent nearly three decades in the Semmelweis Museum, Library and Archive of Medical History. First he had been a research worker, then in 1967 he became deputy head, in 1974 acting director, and since 1985 he has been director-general. The history of medicine and pharmacology had become a peripheral field of science after 1948, and in the 1950s its teaching was also ceased at the university. József Antall as a librarian had elaborated the collection interest of both the museum and the library, he compiled the organizational statute, and proposed that the library and the museum, working separately at that time, be united. With his sense of diplomacy, he won the best experts, put out of the way for political reasons, to be fellows of the institute. He increased the number of staff considerably, and founded the international relations of the institute. He assumed leading roles in Hungarian and international associations, edited the journal "Orvostörténeti Közlemények" (Communications in Medical History). He expected his fellow workers to be welt informed and have scholarly thoroughness. His image of museums of medical and pharmaceutical history in the countryside was similar to the pattern of universities in Germany. Besides his activities in organization and management, he also issued scientific publications not only in the history of medicine, but also in the field of political history. He turned the institute into an acknowledged research and creative workshop, and considered it to be a part of his oeuvre.(pp. 9-14)

Országos Széchényi Könyvtár