Katalin Pataki: Research & CV

The Place of Faith. The Implementation of Joseph II’s Monastic Policies in the Hungarian Kingdom

Research Area 3: Objects, Traces, Mapping: Everyday Experience of Spaces

Contact: katalin.pataki@cefres.cz

Pataki PictureMy PhD project investigates the implementation of the state-led church reforms carried out during the reign of Joseph II in the Hungarian Kingdom and intends to contribute to a better understanding of the new features of state power unfolding at the end of the 18th century. I explore the coercive force of the state to manage church reforms on the grassroots level, namely from the perspective of monks and nuns who had to cope with the requirement of social usefulness both inside and outside their monasteries.

I approach the Josephist monastic policies as a complex set of negotiations over the boundaries of the realms of the secular and/or the governmental vis-à-vis the ecclesiastical and/or the sacred that manifested themselves in the agency of the members of religious orders. I devote special attention to the places designated for the nuns and monks by governmental authorities and their reactions to act according to their own (often differing) preferences by which they also created new spatial settings for and by themselves. As the potential carriers and realizers of the monastic reforms, the monks’ and nuns’ perception of attractive or non-attractive locations, their staying in place or mobility can mark out the scope of enlightened church reforms in a different way than defined earlier.

As a theoretical framework, I apply Michael Mann’s concept of the coordinating state, which enables me to investigate the processes of construction and abolition of the bonds between monasteries and ecclesiastical and lay authorities that led to their “territorial consolidation”.



2013—: PhD studies in Comparative History, Central European University, Budapest

2013: MA in Comparative History, Central European University, Budapest. Topic: Medicine in and out of the Cloister: The Abolition of Monasteries and Medic(in)al Provision in Late Eighteenth-Century Hungary

2008: MA in History, University of Szeged. Topic: The Vedutas of Cluj-Napoca as Valuable Historical Sources


2014: Research Assistant, DFG Project: Academic Reforms and Knowledge Transfer. Statistics in Hungary, late 18th—early 19th centuries

2009-2012: Curator, Heves County Museum Service’s—Hatvany Lajos Museum, Hatvan, Hungary

2008-2009: EVS Volunteer, LVR—Amt für Denkmalpflege im Rheinland, Pulheim, Germany


  • “A hatvani kapucinusok gyógyszertára Grassalkovich I. Antal idején” [The Capuchin Pharmacy of Hatvan and its Patron Count Antal Grassalkovich], in Noémi Ceglédi ed., ““Birodalmam alatt” – Gróf Grassalkovich Antal a birtokos, mecénás és magánember,” Gödöllői Múzeumi Füzetek, no. 14, Gödöllő: Gödöllői Városi Múzeum, 2015.
  • “A hatvani kapucinusok gyógyszertára” [The Capuchin Monastery and its Pharmacy in Hatvan], Archivum 19, Heves County Archives, Eger, 2013.
  • “Kapucinusok letelepedése Hatvanban (1729-1759)” [Capuchin Settlement in Hatvan], Agria XLVII. Annales Musei Agriensis, Eger, 2011, pp. 161-176.