Tibor Frank

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Tibor Frank
Tibor Frank.JPG
Frank in 2015
Born(1948-02-03)3 February 1948
Died15 September 2022(2022-09-15) (aged 74)
Budapest, Hungary
Occupation(s)Historian, Professor of History
SpouseZsuzsa F. Várkonyi
Awards Humboldt Prize
Academic work
Institutions Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE)
Website http://www.franktibor.hu

Tibor Frank (3 February 1948 – 15 September 2022) was a Hungarian historian who was professor of history at the School of English and American Studies of the Faculty of Humanities of the Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE). [1] He was director of its School of English and American Studies (1994–2001, 2006–2014). From 2013 he was corresponding member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA), as of 2019 he was a full member. [2]



Tibor Frank was born in 1948 in Budapest, Hungary. He graduated from Eötvös Loránd University in 1971 with an M.A. in History and English, obtaining his Dr. Univ. in Modern History there (1973). He received his Ph.D. in history at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (1979), his habilitation in history at ELTE in 1996, and his D.Litt. at the HAS in 1998. He also attended Cambridge University, England (Christ's College in 1969, Darwin College in 1980–1981).

Academic career

Frank started his career at ELTE in the Department of Modern History (1971–73) and continued at the Department of English Studies (1973–90), where he taught British history. He was one of the founding members of the Department of American Studies in ELTE in 1990 and chair from 1992 to 1994. [3] In Spring 2000 he set up the Ph.D. program in American Studies at ELTE and continued as its program director until the end of his life. [4]

Frank's areas of research were the period from 1848 to 1945; with respect to international migrations; international images, stereotypes, and propaganda; transatlantic relations; historiography; music and politics.

Professor Frank was chairman of the Commission of History of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (2017–), chairman of the 2nd Bolyai Grant Program (2016–) and a member of the Book and Journal Commission of the academy. Frank founded Hungary's Modern Filológiai Társaság of Hungarian Academy of Sciences [Modern Language Association of HAS] [5] in 1983, and served the association as secretary general from 1983 to 1996 and as vice president between 1996 and 2007. He served as member on the board of Historical Abstracts [6] (Santa Barbara—Oxford, 1989–93, 2000–2008), Nationalities Papers [7] (New York, 1989–2009), Polanyiana [8] (Budapest, 1994–), the European Journal of American Culture [9] (Nottingham, England, 1998–) and Külügyi Szemle [10] (and Foreign Policy Review, 2011–). From 2015 he was editor of Századok, journal of the Hungarian Historical Association.

Frank was co-president (1994–2001), and became honorary president in 2004, of the Hungarian Association of American Studies [11] and was a board member of the European Association for American Studies [12] (EAAS, 1994–2001). He was a member of the board of the U.S.─Hungarian Fulbright Commission (between 1999 and 2002, 2009–2011, 2013–); from 2010 to 2011 and again from 2017 he was chairman of the U.S.—Hungarian Fulbright Board. [13] Between 2007 and 2015 he was deputy chairperson of Magyar Történelmi Társulat (Hungarian Historical Society), [14] [15] in 2015 he was elected chairman of the editorial board of its journal Századok. [16]

Visiting professorships and research grants

Between 1988 and 1990 Tibor Frank was a Fulbright Visiting Professor of History at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) and also at UCLA. In 1990–91 he was invited to the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) as a distinguished visiting professor of history sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities. [17] Between 1988 and 1997 he taught at UCSB Summer Sessions; between 1994 and 1997 he was founder and director of UCSB's The New Europe program. He was an István Deák Chair Visiting Professor at the history department of Columbia University in the City of New York in 2001, 2007, and 2010. [18] His Humboldt Prize of 2002 took him to the Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science) [19] in Berlin, Germany.

From 1992 he was a regular visiting professor at the Education Abroad Program of the University of California in Budapest, Hungary (1992–2008), at the Salzburg Seminar's Center for the Study of American Culture and Language in Salzburg, Austria (1995), [20] in the Nationalism Studies Program of the Central European University (CEU), [21] Budapest, Hungary (1999–2001), in the UNESCO-sponsored Minority Studies Program [22] of the Institute of Sociology of ELTE (1995, 1997), and the IES Abroad Vienna (formerly Institute of European Studies) in Vienna, Austria (1999–). [23] Between 2003 and 2009 he acted as a team leader, with Frank Hadler (GWZO, Leipzig), of the European Science Foundation Programme "Representations of the Past: The Writing of National Histories in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Europe" (Team 4: "Overlapping National Histories"), [24] [25] coedited as Disputed Territories and Shared Pasts: Overlapping National Histories in Modern Europe, published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2011.

Honors and awards

Tibor Frank was awarded the Országh Award [26] in 2000, the Humboldt Forschungspreis (Humboldt Research Award) [27] from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation [28] for 2002, and the Szent-Györgyi Albert-díj (Albert Szent-Györgyi Prize) of the government of Hungary [29] in 2005. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, [30] [31] London in 2006.


Frank was married to psychologist and author Zsuzsa F. Várkonyi, an honorary university professor.



Edited books

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  1. Eötvös Loránd University, Faculty of Arts, Department of American Studies
  2. Hungarian Academy of Sciences - Academicians of HAS
  3. Department of American Studies - History of the Department
  4. Department of American Studies - PhD in American Studies
  5. Modern Filológiai Társaság (Modern Language Association of HAS) - members
  6. Historical Abstracts
  7. Nationalities Papers
  8. Polanyiana - Board members
  9. European Journal of American Culture - Editorial Advisory Board
  10. Külügyi Szemle (Foreign Policy Review) - Editorial Board
  11. HAAS Hungary - Honorary president of the board
  12. European Association for American Studies
  13. Fulbright Hungary - Board members
  14. Magyar Történelmi Társulat (Hungarian Historical Society) - Editorial Board
  15. Magyar Történelmi Társulat (Hungarian Historical Association) - List of members
  16. Századok - Editorial Board
  17. National Endowment for the Humanities
  18. Columbia University East Central European Center
  19. Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte
  20. Salzburg Global Seminar
  21. CEU Nationalism Studies Program
  22. ELTE-UNESCO Minority Studies Programme
  23. IES Abroad Vienna - Staff
  24. European Science Foundation - Representations of the Past: The Writing of National Histories in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Europe (Summary)
  25. European Science Foundation - Prof. Tibor Frank
  26. Országh Award - Awardees, 2000
  27. List of Humboldt-Prise winners on the web page of the Hungarian Humboldt Association
  28. Humboldt Research Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
  29. List of recipients of the Szent-Györgyi Albert-díj on the Web site of the Eötvös Loránd University
  30. Royal Historical Society
  31. Royal Historical Society - List of Fellows