Provocation as a political style: Viktor Orbán's radical language

Gstarted early in his political career Viktor Orbanto deal with his language. He analyzed his speeches and interviews carefully afterwards in order to avoid mistakes and slips of the tongue in the future. When he first became Hungary's prime minister in 1998, he told the American magazine Newsweek: "If you ask people here what the main difference between the previous government and the current government is, most will say that we speak differently. The new language - let's say the new yuppie language - is understandable. It's short and clear – as far as I can get it.”

Orbán has practiced and learned to speak accurately. And when he claims, as he did recently in Vienna, that he used terms like "mixed races" in a "misleading" way, because "that happens," then you can't buy that from him. He didn't use "mixed race" once in his speech, but four times. That's on purpose. Orbán deliberately provokes, not by accident. It's part of his political style: fight instead of compromise, attack instead of defense, sedition instead of calm. He already noticed that this works when he gave his first big public speech. That was in June 1989. The communists were still in power, the border was not yet open.

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