Zsuzsa Gille combines social history, cultural analysis, and
environmental sociology to advance a long overdue social theory of waste in this
study of waste management, Hungarian state socialism, and post--Cold War capitalism.
From 1948 to the end of the Soviet period, Hungary developed a cult of waste that
valued reuse and recycling. With privatization the old environmentally beneficial,
though not flawless, waste regime was eliminated, and dumping and waste incineration
were again promoted. Gille's analysis focuses on the struggle between a
Budapest-based chemical company and the small rural village that became its toxic