Letter to Chicago Tribune (Re: Annex of Oradea)

From the original article (Chicago Tribune):

Helene Beck Deutch: 1906 – 2007. Photographer in 1930s and ’40s

Born in Debrecen, Hungary, she grew up in the Transylvania town of Nagyvarad, which was later annexed by Romania and renamed Oradea. Mrs. Deutch moved with her family in 1924 to Paris, where she studied photography at the Sorbonne.
Later, she became a photographic assistant at Vogue in Paris, then found work as a commercial photographer with a French printing firm.
In 1931 in Paris, she married sculptor Stephen Deutch, who also had emigrated from Hungary. Unable to earn a living from his sculpture, he learned photography from his wife, according to their daughter Annick Smith.

(from letter written directly to the author)Mr. Long,I would have expected far better quality in research from an organization such as yours.Writing that the Transylvanian town of Oradea was annexed by Romania is akin to claiming Black Africans in South Africa ‘annexed’ what was then land within an apartheid South Africa from the Afrikaaner Dutch settlers.

Transylvanian Romanians (and Germans) voted to join with the Romanian kingdom in 1918 – mainly due to the institutionalized racism that the Magyar minority imposed upon the majority population. This “Magyarization” was particularly brutal after the establishment of the dual monarchy in 1867 – where Austrian influence in the region offically faded. Similar injustices were experienced by other people who were ruled by the minority Hungarians in their ethnic homelands – Slovakians, Serbians, and to some extent Croatians.

I hope there is no racist agenda behind your research, and that your writing simply reflects a lack of adequate resources at the Tribune.


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