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Phi Beta Delta honor society presents ‘Kossuth’s Message’

Oct 4, 2012

Ohio Northern University’s Phi Beta Delta honor society for international scholars presents “Kossuth’s Message” in the Dicke Forum on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

“Kossuth’s Message” is a historical re-enactment of Hungarian statesman Lajos Kossuth’s tour of the United States in 1851-52. Kossuth, the president of revolutionary Hungary in the late 1840s, visited the U.S. seeking support for Hungarian independence from the Habsburg monarchy. His tour included a number of stops in Ohio, including an address to the Ohio legislature.

His visit was a focal point in American popular and political life, coming in the midst of a pre-Civil War Constitutional crisis as Americans grappled with slavery and the nature of the Union. “Kossuth’s Message” summarizes and re-enacts Kossuth’s encounters with pre-Civil War Americans.

This one-hour historical reading is built around Kossuth’s address to the Ohio legislature and his reflections at the beginning and end of his U.S. tour. Tamas Csajka will portray Kossuth, and Andrew Ludanyi will play Laszlo Karoly, Kossuth’s personal secretary. The performance is supported by two narrators (Michael Loughlin, ONU professor of history, and Ellen Wilson, ONU associate professor of history), a folksinger/musician (Katica Szabo), and background materials that provide maps of the time and pictures of the individuals encountered by Kossuth.

Phi Beta Delta is the honor society for international scholars. Founded in 1987, the nominees for membership in the Gamma Upsilon chapter of Phi Beta Delta include outstanding faculty, staff, students and alumni. The society hopes to integrate those who possess a deep commitment to international affairs, education and research. One of the functions of the Gamma Upsilon chapter has been to create a regular forum in which international affairs can be discussed using University sources and by seeking prominent individuals with varied experience in international affairs recruited from beyond the University community.