Title of the Hungarian original
Magvető Könyvkiadó, Budapest, 1957

Translated by Inez Kemenes
Translation revised by Fred Macnicol
Cover design by Mária Hódosi

This Hungarian novel is about the travels of a modern Gulliver. An English ship's surgeon finds himself on an unknown island, in a country which, it appears, has reached the apex of technical civilization. Its inhabitants, the Hins, live a perfectly ordered existence, without emotions, desires, arts, politics or the other stimuli of ordinary people. Gulliver is soon unhappy in the bleak perfection of this way of life — as he sees it — and asks to be admitted to the closed settlement of the Behins, beings with souls and atavistic human traits. There, however, even more absurd things happen to him...
Sci-fi and satire are forms which usually take different directions. Szathmári's novel is a very individual mixture of both, and was written in 1935 as one of the many philosophical and critical works of fiction following in the wake of Swift's original work. It cannot be said that Kazohinia was produced under the influence of Aldous Huxley, although there are many similarities, as it was written two years before Brave New World appeared. It has gone through a number of editions in Hungary, and retains its popularity today.
This Gulliver represents the ordinary man, unable to find his place either in a society shackled by human prejudice or in a soulless civilization. Many of us may recognize our own selves in him. But the sensitive reader will also recognize certain familiar aspects of the imaginary world of the Hins and Behins as well.


Gulliver among the Hins

CHAPTER ONE. Author's country is threatened by dangers, he resolves to offer his services — He is assigned to the cruiser "Invincible" and starts for Shanghai to protect culture — His encounter with the Italian ship. The cruiser is sunk by explosion but author has a merciful escape

CHAPTER TWO. Author awakes in Kazohinia — He meets Hins who help him generously but misunderstand his respectful gratitude — For the time being, he cannot find the reason for this — His arrival at the Hins' uncommon capital — The English currency is unfairly treated — Author's sense of decency seriously outraged-His experiences in the Hins' restaurant and in the street — His guide invites him to his home

CHAPTER THREE. Author is examined by doctors — They place him in a hospital among the Belohins and teach him their language — Further, we encounter the kazo concept, the basic principle, or, rather, the prevailing condition of the country

CHAPTER FOUR. Author is let out to town where he experiences very odd things — The Hins do not know money, nevertheless they are rich —Author's debate on money and production — He comes to know their streets, parks, restaurant and library — His fruitless investigation into the past and the morals of the Hins

CHAPTER FIVE. Author becomes acquainted with some of the secrets of the Hins — In this chapter we come to know that the Hins have no kind of constitutional form — Zatamon's strange opinions concerning the administration of justice, love, the soul, and literature — Author's difficult game of chess with his tutor — A confused explanation about the kazo

CHAPTER SIX. Author moves out into Hin life and practises medicine — The Hins' wonderful medical science — Author, though guiltless, becomes involved in murder, through which he leaves his post — The Hins have no consideration for the soul of children — Author becomes a weaver but boredom almost causes him to drift into catastrophe

CHAPTER SEVEN. Author becomes acquainted with a Hin woman in whom he wants to build a soul — His experiments have unfortunate consequences — He is taken once more to hospital

CHAPTER EIGHT. Author suffers from homesickness and complains bitterly to Zatamon — Zatamon makes strange statements concerning author's country who, however, proves the rectitude of European culture — Zatamon speaks about the Behins, who now appear much more attractive to author — He asks to be led among the Behins

Gulliver among the Behins

CHAPTER NINE. We arrive at the gravest days of author's adventurous journey, spent among the Behins — The oddities of the first day

CHAPTER TEN. Author accepted in the kona whose significance is not yet clear to him — His spirituality taken away by force — He is given a peculiar post — The Behins' theory of the nourishing quality of the pebble — We learn what the word lamik means — The Behins' extraordinary economic views Boetology

CHAPTER ELEVEN. Author arrives in the skoro — We learn the methods used to warp thinking — The Behins falsify geometry — Author's dispute over the child's bruhu which he spoils unwittingly

CHAPTER TWELVE. Here we encounter a more serious stage of the Behinic disease: the kipu — Zemoeki and Zeremble disagree — Methods of spoiling a chair — The superstringists — A Behin professes reason — Debate about the woman's breasts and the butterfly-bilevs — The story of a famous mufruk

CHAPTER THIRTEEN. A precise rule for when the Behins are consistent Author's strange experiences with the square, and the burning house — The Behins' humorists, the phosophs and their sayings — Creation according to the Behins — Their wise men, the makrus and their sorry plight —Author almost publishes his travel notes

CHAPTER FOURTEEN. Author explains the oddities of the konch and the namuk — The fad of the yellow-eared and the blue-eared which also sweeps the author along with it — The tragic fate of the Liftmaster and the Dumplingmaster — The namuk's confused speech at the konch Author's naive attempt comes to a bad end, but he still leaves the konch safely — Author tries in vain to understand the oddities experienced

CHAPTER FIFTEEN. Author encounters the Behins' strangest fancy: the rules of eating for women — We further meet the amusing' custom of the Bigrusts — At the shukk, author nearly comes off badly — Time and again he is up against the rules of eating for women and on this account suffers many trials and tribulations

CHAPTER SIXTEEN. We reach the saddest chapter of author's adventures — The Behins break into the fit of rage called buku — Author almost falls victim to it — Author publishes with reservation the part concerning the bikru

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN. Author is taken to the stake but in a near miraculous manner he escapes — He fulfils an important but sad mission which entails the tragic perdition of the Behins

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN. In this chapter light will finally be cast on the secrets of the Hins' strange life — The Behinity and the kazo — Author and his country are deeply offended by Zatamon, leading him to a decision

CHAPTER NINETEEN. Author wishes to attempt to get home but Zatamon does not share his views — Eventually author himself makes a boat and successfully sets out on the high seas

CHAPTER TWENTY. Author is caught in a storm — By good luck he meets the "Terrible" — He is kindly received by his fellow-officers — His arrival home