Géza Jeszenszky

Hungarian Foreign Minister ret

Hungarian Foreign Minister ret

Born in Budapest in 1941. Due to his commitment to the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 was banned from higher education for two years. From 1961 read history, English and library science at Eötvös University, Budapest, receiving an M.A. in 1966 and a Ph.D. in 1970. After two years as a schoolteacher Jeszenszky joined the National Széchényi Library in 1968. In 1976 he was invited to teach at the Budapest (then Karl Marx) University of Economics, where he was appointed reader in the history of international relations in 1981 and was elected Dean of the School of Social and Political Science in 1989. Between 1973 and 1976 he held a research scholarship from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences at the Institute of History. In 1980 he received the degree „Candidate of Historical Sciences” from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Dr. Jeszenszky is the author of a large number of scholarly publications and political writings, including An Outline History of International Relations (Budapest, 1984) and Az elveszett presztízs [The Changing Image of Hungary in Britain,1894-1918], (Budapest, 1986, 2nd ed. 1994). Jeszenszky taught courses on the history of international relations, modern Hungarian history, esp. foreign policy, on Central and Eastern Europe (the Habsburg Monarchy, the problem of national minorities) and on the transition process in the formerly Communist-dominated countries in the 1990s. In 1984-86 he was a visiting professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara, teaching the history of Central and Eastern Europe. Jeszenszky was a founding member of the Hungarian Democratic Forum (1988), which won the free elections in April 1990, nominating him Minister for Foreign Affairs in the government of J. Antall (1990-94). As Minister Jeszenszky made a personal contribution to the dismantling of the Warsaw Pact and to the reorientation of Hungary's foreign policy. Dedicated to the idea of regional cooperation he helped establishing and maintaining the „Visegrád” cooperation of the restored Central European democracies. He negotiated bilateral treaties with Hungary's three neighbors, Ukraine, Slovenia and Croatia, countries who were ready to provide guarantees for the rights of their sizeable Hungarian population. Following the elections of 1994 Jeszenszky became a member of the Opposition in Parliament. In 1995 he was elected President of the Hungarian Atlantic Council, a post he gave up when he was nominated Ambassador to the United States of America. He served in Washington between 1998 and 2002, representing the government led by V. Orbán. In September 2002 he resumed teaching history and international relations at the Budapest University of Economics and Public Administration. As a Visiting Professor he also teaches the history of Central Europe at the College of Europe, Warsaw-Natolin, and at the Babes-Bolyai University at Cluj-Napoca/Kolozsvár in Romania. In his dual capacity as a scholar and a politician Dr. Jeszenszky participated in numerous conferences and spoke at many universities all over the world. He received a number of decorations and awards including a C.I.E.S. Fulbright Grant (1984-86) and a Guest Scholar Grant from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (1985). In 1996 he was Helen De Roy Visiting Professor at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Dr. Jeszenszky is married, has a son and a daughter. He is an active sportsman, his favorites are skiing, rowing and mountaineering. He is the President of the Hungarian Carpathian Association.



Articles by Géza Jeszenszky

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