Istvan Deak
Office: East Central European Center, Harriman Institute
Columbia University, MC 3336, 420 W 118th St., New York, NY 10027
Home: 410 Riverside Drive, New York, N.Y. 10025
Tel.: office (212) 854-0619; home (212) 865-4797
Fax: (212) 865-4797; E-Mail:  

Istvan Deak, who is Seth Low Professor Emeritus at Columbia University, was born in 1926 in Hungary and began his university studies there. Following his departure from Hungary in 1948, he studied history at the Sorbonne in Paris and worked as a journalist and librarian in both France and Germany. Since 1956, he has been residing in New York City where he studied modern European history at Columbia University.  He obtained his PhD degree in 1964 and has been teaching at Columbia University, with some brief intermissions, ever since.  He was the Director of the University's Institute on East Central Europe between 1968 and 1979.

Professor Deak's teaching and research interests are mainly in the history of Central and East Central Europe. His publications include, Weimar Germany's Left-wing Intellectuals: A Political History of the "Weltbuhne" and Its Circle (The University of California Press, 1968); The Lawful Revolution: Louis Kossuth and the Hungarians, 1848-1849 (Columbia University Press, 1979), for which he received the Lionel Trilling Book Award of Columbia College, and which also appeared in German and Hungarian, as well as Beyond Nationalism: A Social and Political History of the Habsburg Officer Corps, 1848-1918 (Oxford University Press,  1990), which received, among other things, the Wayne S. Vucinich Book Prize of the American Association for the  Advancement of Slavic Studies, and which also appeared in  German, Hungarian, and Italian. His most recent publication is Essays on Hitler's Europe (University of Nebraska Press, 2001), which appeared also in Hungarian. He edited and partly wrote, together with Jan T. Gross and Tony Judt, The Politics of Retribution in Europe: World War II and Its Aftermath (Princeton University Press, 2000).

Istvan Deak has published articles in US, British, Hungarian, Austrian, etc., books and journals on such subjects as Hungarian historiography, the cultural and political scene in Weimar Germany, the revolutions of 1848, World War I in Central Europe, the rise of fascism, collaboration and resistance in Europe during World War II, and post-World War II judicial retributions. He is a frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books and The New Republic. Deak's current research project is on collaboration, resistance, and retribution in World War II Europe.

In 1990, Istvan Deak was elected into the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and in the course of his career, he received, among other things, the John S. Guggenheim fellowship and was invited as a fellow to the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, N.J., the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C., and the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna, Austria. In 1999, he received the George Washington Award of the American Hungarian Foundation.

Since his retirement in 1997 Istvan Deak has been teaching at Columbia University as a special lecturer. In the spring of 1999 and in the fall of 2002 he was visiting professor at Stanford University. His wife, Gloria, is an art historian, and his daughter, Eva, who is married, is an events manager in San Francisco.