Gala History Lecture
Georgetown Professor Dennis Deletant hosts lecture on Romanian Centennial
Date: Saturday Nov. 17
Time: 1 PM-3 PM
Location: The Romanian Embassy

Interview with Georgetown University Professor Dennis Deletant - Visiting Ratiu Professor of Romanian Studies, leads a discussion on Saturday, Nov. 17 as Romania marks 100 years as a modern nation-state. Open to all Gala Ticket holders.

How did you come to Romanian Studies?
For me, Romania and its past is a benign virus. As a student of the Romance languages I was intrigued by the nature of Romanian and its survival as a proverbial 'island of Latinity in a sea of Slavic’. I therefore opted to improve my knowledge of the language which I had taken up at university in 1964.

On his first visit to Romania
In summer 1965 when, as a university undergraduate at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies of the University of London, I attended a summer school organized by the university of Bucharest in the mountain resort of Sinaia. This was my first experience of Communism. It gave me my most important lesson in navigating my contact with Romania’s people, and an appreciation of the strategies which they developed to lead their lives. Lives were lived on two levels – one public and the other private. That lesson is, I hope, reflected in the several studies that I have written.
My latest book entitled Romania under Communism. Paradox and Degeneration was published last month. Romania during the two world wars is the subject of my current research.

What is the greatest potential for strong US-Romanian relations?
Given the legacy of Ceausescu’s rule, which left Romania one of the poorest and most atomised societies of eastern Europe, one can only admire the major strides made by the country to resume its place in Europe. Its membership of NATO and the EU places it within an arena of certainty, and that certainty has provided a platform for investment and development. In the first half of this year, it could show that it was the EU’s fastest-growing economy. Yet this pace is threatened by attacks on the rule of law and these have opened up a breach in Romanian society between the political elite and the population and have fueled the exodus of the young from the country which has now reached amongst the highest levels in the EU. The greatest potential for strong US-Romanian relations is respect for the rule of law and improvement in bureaucratic competence and professionalism.

See you there!