Full(-text) disclosure: the Hungarian example

A well-known "secret" within the Slavic Reference Service is that libraries and information organizations from across Eastern Europe provide full-text access to many of their best resources. Hungary, oddly enough, is one of the best examples of this phenomenon.

Below is a list of a few online databases that offer the full-text feature for their items. Be prepared to encounter some restrictions, however, since copyright laws still apply in Hungary and items may not be available to users outside the country. Give it a try, though, and you may be surprised at what you find.

  • http://mek.oszk.hu/
    Hungarian Electronic Library

    The Hungarians have been collecting materials electronically since 1994, when the Internet first began. Over time, the Hungarian Electronic Library has grown tremendously, to over 4000 records. This is a collection of electronic books, available full-text; it is easy to browse by subject from the interface.
  • http://epa.oszk.hu/
    Electronic Periodicals Database

    An off-shoot of the above collection, this database offers access to periodical articles from various disciplines. Full-text access to these materials were made possible by a mutual agreement between the National Library of Hungary and the publishers of these journals.
  • http://www.matarka.hu/eng/
    Hungarian Periodicals Table of Contents Database MATARKA:

    As the title suggests, this database has digitized and indexed the table of contents of many Hungarian journals from across disciplines. This is an excellent source for confirming bibliographic information about articles. 

Our scandalous-goes against librarianship- suggestion for the week: when you have a Hungarian, or Polish, Slovak, Slovene, etc., journal article in mind, don't be afraid to use Google to look for it. There are a number of journals from different disciplines and countries that offer their most recent materials online for free. Even if you don't find the full article, you are still likely to find a table of contents that will verify the information you need, which, in turn, will help keep your librarian sane.

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