This news release describes past events and should be used for historical purposes only. Please note date of release.
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield Hall 218
Eau Claire, WI 54702-4004
Annual Symposium on East Europe
Slated for April 9 at UW-Eau Claire
phone (715) 836-4741
fax (715) 836-2900

MAILED: March 31, 1999

EAU CLAIRE — The fifth annual Symposium on East Europe will be held April 9-10 in room 101 of the Haas Fine Arts Center at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
The free conference, titled "From the Baltics to the Balkans: National Minorities Past and Present," will bring together experts to explain the East European dilemma.
The vicissitudes of history have made East Europe a land of ethnic, national and religious minorities. The majority populations and the minorities now face issues of identity and cultural or even physical survival.
    Friday's Symposium schedule includes:
  • 1:30 p.m., introductory remarks by Paulis Lazda, professor of history at UW-Eau Claire and co-chair of the Symposium. A welcome by William Nielsen, president of the Eau Claire City Council, and Thomas Miller, interim provost at UW-Eau Claire.
  • 1:45 p.m., "Ethnopluralism in East Central Europe," by Rasma Karklins, professor of political science at the University of Illinois-Chicago. Karklins is past president of the Association of the Advancement of Baltic Studies and has published widely on ethnic problems in the Soviet Union.
  • 2:35 p.m., "Identity, Ethnicity and Minorities in Estonia," by Toivo Raun, professor of history and chair of Central Euroasian Studies at Indiana University at Bloomington. He has traveled often to Estonia and was a Visiting Professor at the University of Tartu. He has written on post-Soviet Estonia and Baltic history.
  • 4 p.m., "Pariahs and Politic: Gypsies and the State in East Europe," by Zoltan Barany, professor of government at the University of Texas at Austin. Barany, a native of Hungary, has written extensively on East Europe, ethnic relations, politics and military affairs. He is the author of books, articles, ethnic and racial studies.
  • 7 p.m., keynote address, "Redefinition of Ethnicity in the Post-Communist Countries," by Paul Goble, director of the Communications Division at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and publisher of RFE/RL Newsline. He was the special adviser for Soviet nationality problems and Baltic affairs at the State Department and was a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for Peace. He is the author of volumes on ethnic problems in the former Soviet Union and articles on nationality questions. Goble is a frequent commentator on post-Soviet affairs for the national news media.
    Saturday's Symposium schedules includes:
  • 9:45 a.m., "Historical Issues in Bosnia and Kosovo," by Charles Jelavich, professor of history at the Indiana University at Bloomington. He is the author of 17 books on Balkan, East European and Russian history, past president of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies and a consultant on the Balkans for UNESCO.
  • 10:35 a.m., "The Dayton Accords, The International Community and Conflict Resolution in Bosnia," by Sarah Kent, professor of history at UW-Stevens Point. Her most recent publication is on the war in Bosnia, "Reading about the Yugoslav War in English." In 1996, she was a member of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe monitoring team for the Bosnian elections.
  • 2 p.m., panel discussion, "Perspectives and Prospects." Panelists include Barany, Elinor Murray Despalatovic, Goble, Jelavich, Karklins, Kent and Raun. Mildred Larson, co-chair of the Symposium, will moderate the discussion. Despalatovic is a professor of history at Connecticut College. She is an authority on the history and culture of the former Yugoslavia, where she has lived and traveled.
The Symposium is funded by a grant from the Wisconsin Humanities Council on behalf of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support came from the UW-Eau Claire departments of history, political science and foreign languages; the UW-Eau Claire Foundation; Center for International Education; the College of Arts and Sciences Continuing Education/UW-Extension; L.E. Phillips Memorial Library; and gifts from Karl Andresen, professor emeritus, and Dr. Thomas Grewe.
For more information, call Lazda at (715) 836-5501 or send him e-mail at

UWEC [Administrative Offices] [News Bureau]

Janice B. Wisner
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 218
(715) 836-4741

Updated: April 1, 1999