I can’t really remember a time when I was not self-consciously of Hungarian heritage. Sure, I harbor a few single-picture early memories frozen in my mind before I had any sense of what identity even meant, but the sauce in which I was marinated from my earliest remembered days was as a child with two parents who had come to the United States from Hungary by way of Germany after World War II.
I grew up speaking and responding to Hungarian right alongside English, and with my parents’ thick accents and European mannerisms and cultural sensibilities, there was no hiding the fact that members of the Hidas Family were aliens arrived on these shores.
And as freshly arrived immigrants who had attained maturity in their native land, my parents faced the typical immigrants’ dilemma: how to blend into the new land and its ways without denying and sacrificing the old.
The horns of that dilemma are nearly imp...Read More