Fall 2022: Slovak-themed books by CEU Press

For the recent list of books published by Central European University Press on Slovak themes, see the file below.

OBITUARY: Owen Verne Johnson (1946-2022)

A tribute by Prof. M. Mark Stolarik

On August 6, 2022, Owen V. Johnson, one of the leading scholars on Slovak history in the USA went to his eternal reward in Bloomington, Indiana. He had taught at the Ernie Pyle School of Journalism at Indiana University from 1980 to 2014, when he retired as Associate Professor Emeritus.

Owen Johnson first came to my attention in 1978, when he was working on his Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Michigan concerning the establishment of Slovak education in post-war Czechoslovakia. I recruited him into the Slovak Studies Association that same year. In 1980 he joined the Editorial Board of the scholarly annual Slovakia. In 1988 Owen was elected President of the Slovak Studies Association and served until 1990.

Johnson made his name with the publication of his revised dissertation (1978) Slovakia 1918-1938: Education and the Making of a Nation (Boulder: East European Monographs, 1985). In this seminal work, he argued that Anton Štefánek, the first Minister of Education after the creation of Czechoslovakia, in spite of his pro-Czechoslovak leanings, established a solid education system in Slovakia which, ironically, led to the rise of Slovak nationalists to the forefront of Slovak culture and politics. The rest, as they say, is history.

Owen received several awards and scholarships during his many years in academia. These included Fulbright Scholarships in Czechoslovakia in 1973-74 and in Warsaw in 2009-10; IREX Scholarships in Slovakia in 1982 and 2003-04; and in Moscow in 1991; he also received a large American Council for Learned Societies grant to hold an international scholarly conference on journalism in East Central Europe at Indiana University in 1983. Your editor, as well as Madelaine Korbel Albright (!) participated in this conference.

Professor Johnson was also a journalist and Professor of Journalism at Indiana University. In this capacity he wrote two books on the American war correspondent Ernie Pyle, and many articles on journalism, whether in East Central Europe and elsewhere. He also taught numerous students of journalism, whether at the undergraduate, M.A. or Ph.D. level. 

Owen Johnson was a prolific publisher. He published four books on Ernie Pyle or East Central Europe and 37 articles and many book reviews in professional journals. He also published many dozens of articles in popular journals and newspapers. He appeared numerous times on radio, including PBS. He also attended dozens of scholarly conferences, especially the ASEEES, where he usually presented a paper on some topic related to Slovak history or to the history of journalism in East Central Europe. We will sorely miss him. May he rest in peace!

Scholarship Funds Available

The Chair in Slovak History & Culture at the University of Ottawa will again offer scholarships to scholars who wish to study or do research in Slovak history in the extensive Archives and Special Collections of the University of Ottawa in the summer of 2023. For information on Slovak archival holdings feel free to contact Veronique Paris, Archival Technician at Scholars who wish to apply for scholarships up to $5,000 (CDN) should contact the Chairholder in Slovak History & Culture, Prof. Roman Krakovsky: or Prof. M. Mark Stolarik, Chairholder Emeritus:

Seeking Article Submissions:

Ján Golian of the Catholic University in Ružomberok invites contributions of articles and reviews in English to the journal Kulturné dejiny (Cultural History).

David Muhlena of the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids, Iowa welcomes article submissions for their bi-annual journal Slovo. He writes: Slovo is received by the NCSML’s members; the writing style is similar to what you find in Smithsonian Magazine, so less academic but still rigorous. Let me know if you have questions or need clarifications. Contact:


The scholarly annual Slovakia, which has been published by the Slovak League of America from 1951 through 2021 will cease publication as of now. The Slovak League of America was founded in 1907 to promote autonomy for the Slovak nation within the Kingdom of Hungary and, after 1918 within Czechoslovakia. After 1945 it supported Slovak independence. Once independence was achieved in 1993, interest in, and financial support for the Slovak League began to decline to the point that the League can no longer subsidize the publication of its scholarly annual. Slovakia was initially edited by Filip Hrobak, the editor of the weekly Jednota. After his death in 1964 Jozef Paučo, the former editor of the daily Slovák in Slovakia (1939-1945) took over until his death in 1975. After that the late Michael Novak edited it until 1982, when M. Mark Stolarik took over. He edited it through 2021. This was the only English-language scholarly annual devoted exclusively to Slovak history in existence. It will be sorely missed.

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