About Us

The History of the department

The origins of the University of Szeged date back to the University of Kolozsvár founded in 1872 by Francis Joseph I, and moved to Szeged out of necessity in 1921. Education started with the leadership of three refugee university professors of Kolozsvár, Lajos Szádeczky-Kardoss, Sándor Márki, and László Erdélyi. Between the two World Wars outstanding professors of Hungarian historiography taught in Szeged, among them Elemér Mályusz, József Deér, and József Fógel, who was the first in the history of the University of Szeged to direct a World History Institute.

After the history professors of the first great generation of left or died, there was a complete change over of personnel and structure in 1940/41. Between 1921 and 1950 there were not many students majoring in history or in any other subjects.

In 1949/50 parallel with the changes in the country, there was a significant change in the education of historians as well. Instead of appointing the professors based on their denominational affiliation, political identification with the Soviet regime became a major consideration. Students majored in one subject, and the number of history majors increased considerably. Still, the number of history students who graduated at the beginning of the 1950s did not exceed forty.

The teaching of world history was separated into two fields 1953, and the Department of Medieval World History and the Department of Modern and Contemporary World History were established. The first head of the Department of Modern and Contemporary World History was associate professor Lajos Székely, and he was followed by full professor Dániel Csatári, and full professor Enikő A. Sajti. In 1993 full professor László J. Nagy became the head of the then unified department. The Department of Modern and Contemporary World History was divided in 1997, and the present Department of Modern World History and Mediterranean Studies was established. Its head was and since then has been László J. Nagy.

The head of our department is at the same time the head of the History Doctoral School at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Szeged. He is also the head of the Modern History of the Mediterranean Doctoral sub-program. The other full professor of the department, Enikő A. Sajti is also a member of the Council of the Doctoral School, and is the head of the Modern History of Eastern Europe and the Balkan States sub-program.

At present six professors work for the department, all of them have an academic degree. Two of them are full professors of history and professors of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, with a DSc. degree, and four of them have a PhD. degree.

The head of our department is Lajos Kövér associate professor from July 2010.

International Relations

From the 1990s on intensive relations have been established with French and Italian universities, the University of Tunis (Manouba), and the University of Malta. Teaching is within the framework of Erasmus program, while research focuses on the modern history of the Medierranean.

Erasmus partners in France: Université d’Angers, Université de Nice, Université de Nanterre, Université Aix-Marseille

Erasmus partners in Italy: Roma Tre, Universitá degli Studi di Lecce, Universitá degli Studi di Udine

Erasmus partner in Malta: University of Malta

Partners in connection with the Mediterranean studies:
  • Centre de la Méditerranée Moderne et Contemporaine de l’Université de Nice (www.unice.fr/cmmc)
  • Institut de Recherches et d’Etudes sur le Monde Arabe et Musulman de l’Université d’Aix-Marseille (www.mmsh.univ-aix.fr/iremam)
  • Université de Manouba (Tunis) Faculté des Sciences Humaines, Département d’Histoire (www.uma.rnu.tn)