Pre-War rural Hungary was overloaded with, rather than deficient in, categorizations in terms of class, stratum, wealth, religion and locality of origin. Rigid categorizations, however, not only divided the community, but also ordered relations within groups and, perhaps more importantly, allowed clear self-classification. Identifying one's own position in relation to others, and identifying those with whom one's interest and goals coincided, were essential for the integration of local communities. Informal associations based on self-selected membership were numerous in pre-War rural communities in Hungary, integrating horizontally all members of the community.