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Janko Prunk

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Janko Prunk
Janko Prunk (2015)
Janko Prunk (2015)
Born (1942-12-30) December 30, 1942 (age 81)
Loka pri Zidanem Mostu, Slovenian Styria, Third Reich
Occupation(s)Historian, Politician
Known forModern history, Political philosophy, Christian socialism

Janko Prunk (audio speaker iconpronunciation ), (born December 30, 1942) is a Slovenian historian of modern history. He has published articles and monographs on analytical politology, modern history, the genesis of modern political formations, and the history of social and political philosophy in Slovenia. He has also written on the history of political movements in Slovenia from the end of the 19th century until World War II, especially about Slovene Christian socialism and the history of Slovenian national questions.


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Prunk was born in the small village of Loka pri Zidanem Mostu near the town of Sevnica in central Slovenia, in what was then the German-occupied Lower Styria. He graduated from University of Ljubljana in 1966 and obtained his master's degree there in 1972. He obtained his PhD in 1976 with thesis on the relationship between the Slovenian Christian Socialist movement and the Communist Party of Slovenia within the Liberation Front of the Slovenian People, which at the time was a somehow problematic topic. In 1984 and 1988, he was awarded scholarships by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, which let him to continue his studies in Cologne and Freiburg. Later, he worked as a researcher at the University of Freiburg. From 1966 to 1995, he collaborated with the Institute for modern history in Ljubljana. He worked as professor at the Faculty for Social Sciences[1] of the University of Ljubljana.

He has written on politology, modern history, modern political formations, and the history of social and political thought in Slovenia. He has also written on the history of political movements in Slovenia from the end of 19th century until World War II, especially with Slovene Christian socialism and the history of Slovenian national questions.

Prunk is a member of Leibniz Institute of European History in Mainz, and a senior member of the Center for European Integration Studies in Bonn.


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Prunk has been actively involved in politics. As an early admirer of Jože Pučnik, he joined the Slovenian Social Democratic Union after the democratization of Slovenia. He was an active member of the Slovenian Democratic Party (known as Slovenian Social Democratic Party between 1989 and 2003). Between 1992 and 1993, he served as Minister for Slovenes outside Slovenia in the first coalition[2] cabinet of Janez Drnovšek. Between 2004 and 2008, he served as chairman of the Party's internal Committee for Education Policies; he quit for disagreements over the Government policy favouring private universities. He became very critical of the then prime minister Janez Janša, whom he accused of being a "liberal with an authoritative touch" who aspires at becoming a "Slovenian Piłsudski".[3][4]

From 1992 to 1993, he was the Minister without portfolio for Slovenes abroad in Slovenia in the centre-left government of Janez Drnovšek. In 2005, he was appointed by the Foreign Minister Dimitrij Rupel as president of the Slovene-Croatian Historical Commission,[5] formed by the governments of the two countries to shed light on the history of the relations between the two nations.[6]

Honors and awards

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  • 1999: Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia in science award.
  • 2016: Sigmund Zois award for superior achievement, for scientific monography Zgodovina Evrope v dobi racionalistične civilizacije 1775-2015 (History of Europe in the era of rationalist civilisation 1775-2015).

Selected publications

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Prunk has written over 500 specialized articles and books. His book A brief history of Slovenia: Historical background of the Republic of Slovenia[7] is one of the basic full works on modern Slovenian history.[8]


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  • Politično delovanje škofa Jegliča ob priliki cerkvenih vizitacij (diplomska naloga) [Political work of the bishop Jeglič at the chance of the church visits (diploma thesis)] (in Slovenian). 1966.
  • Slovenski krščanski socialisti v času šestojanuarske diktature 1929-1934 [Slovene Christian socialists in the times of sixth january dictatorship 1929-1934] (in Slovenian). 1973.
  • Pot krščanskih socialistov v Osvobodilno fronto slovenskega naroda :razvoj 1918-1946 (doktorska disertacija) [Path of the Christian socialists into the liberation front of the Slovene nation : development 1918-1946 (doctoral dissertation)] (in Slovenian). Cankarjeva Založba. 1976.
  • Zgodovina 2-2 :druga svetovna vojna in svet po njej [History 2 :Second world war and the world afterwards] (in Slovenian). Branko Božič, Tomaž Weber. Državna založba Slovenije. 1978.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  • Slovenski narodni programi :narodni programi v slovenski politični misli od 1848-1945 [Slovene national programs :national programs in Slovene political thought 1848-1945] (in Slovenian). Društvo 2000. 1986.
  • Slovenački nacionalni programi : nacionalni programi u slovenačkoj političkoj misli od 1848. do 1945. godine [Slovene national programs :national programs in Slovene political thought 1848-1945] (in Serbian). Eksportpres. 1988. ISBN 86-7145-068-6.
  • Nova slovenska samozavest [New Slovene self-esteem] (in Slovenian). Panatal. 1990.
  • Ernst Gombrich (1991). Kratka svetovna zgodovina za mlade bralce [A Little History of the World] (in Slovenian). Janko Prunk (translation). Državna Založba Slovenije. ISBN 86-341-0666-7.
  • Slovenski narodni vzpon [Slovene national rise] (in Slovenian). Državna založba Slovenije. 1992. ISBN 86-341-0846-5.
  • 20. stoletje - zgodovina za 8. razred osnovne šole [20th century history schoolbook] (in Slovenian). Državna založba Slovenije. 1993. ISBN 86-341-0870-8.
  • Vodnik po slovenskih vinorodnih okoliših [A guide to Slovene wine regions] (in Slovenian). Založba Grad. 1994. ISBN 961-90119-1-0.
  • A brief history of Slovenia (in Slovenian). Založba Grad. 1996. ISBN 961-90119-2-9.
  • Slowenien - ein Abriss seiner Geschichte [A brief history of Slovenia] (in German). Založba Grad. 1996. ISBN 961-90119-4-5.
  • Kratka zgodovina Slovenije [A brief history of Slovenia] (in Slovenian). Založba Grad. 2002. ISBN 961-90119-7-X.
  • Die rationalistische Zivilisation [The rationalist civilisation] (in German). Center for European Integration Studies. 2003. ISBN 3-936183-26-0. ISSN 1435-3288.
  • Slovenian historia [A brief history of Slovenia] (in Finnish). Kirja-aurora. 2004. ISBN 951-29-2678-4.
  • Zgodovina ideoloških spopadov med vojnama [History of ideologic confrontations between the wars] (in Slovenian). Društvo 2000. 2004. ISBN 961-91007-9-4.
  • Ernst Gombrich (2005). Kratka svetovna zgodovina za mlade bralce (2. izd.) [A Little History of the World (2nd ed.)] (in Slovenian). Janko Prunk (translation). Založba Grad. ISBN 961-90119-8-8.
  • Žrtve vojne in revolucije [Fatalities of war and revolution] (in Slovenian). Državni svet Republike Slovenije. 2005. ISBN 961-6453-08-4.
  • Parlamentarna izkušnja Slovencev [Parliamentary experience of Slovenes] (in Slovenian). Faculty of Social Sciences. 2005. ISBN 961-235-223-2.
  • Facts about Slovenia. Government of the Republic of Slovenia. 2005. ISBN 961-6435-10-8.
  • Parlamentarna izkušnja Slovencev 1848 - 2004 (2. rev. izd.) [Parliamentary experience of Slovenes (2nd rev. ed.)] (in Slovenian). Faculty for social sciences. 2006. ISBN 961-235-256-9.
  • Kratka zgodovina Slovenije (3. rev. izd.) [A brief history of Slovenia (3rd rev. ed.)] (in Slovenian). Založba Grad. 2006. ISBN 978-961-90119-9-7.
  • Fakten über Slowenien [Facts about Slovenia] (in German). Kommunikationsamt der Regierung der Republik Slowenien. 2007. ISBN 978-961-6435-44-4.
  • Datos sobre Eslovenia [Facts about Slovenia] (in Spanish). Eslovenia Instituto de Geodesía de Eslovenia. 2007. ISBN 978-961-6435-42-0.
  • A brief history of Slovenia (3rd rev. ed.). Založba Grad. 2008. ISBN 978-961-92448-0-7.
  • Racionalistična civilizacija : 1776-2000 [Rationalist civilisation : 1776-2000] (in Slovenian). Mladinska knjiga. 2008. ISBN 978-961-01-0629-6.
  • Faits sur la Slovénie [Facts about Slovenia] (in French). Bureau gouvernemental pour la communication. 2009. ISBN 978-961-6435-58-1.
  • Fakten über Slowenien (2nd rev. ed.) [Facts about Slovenia (2nd rev. ed.)] (in German). Kommunikationsamt der Regierung der Republik Slowenien. 2009. ISBN 978-961-6435-50-5.
  • Facts about Slovenia. Government Communication Office. 2011. ISBN 978-961-6435-55-0.
  • Janko Prunk (2014). Sto let življenja slovenskih političnih strank : 1890-1990 [One hundred years of life of Slovene political parties : 1890-1990] (in Slovenian). Marjetka Rangus. Faculty of Social Sciences, Založba FDV. ISBN 978-961-235-683-5.
  • Zgodovina Evrope v dobi racionalistične civilizacije 1775-2015 [History of Europe in the era of rationalist civilisation 1775-2015] (in Slovenian). Cankarjeva založba. 2015. ISBN 978-961-282-131-9.


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  1. Personal section at the University of Ljubljana
  2. "Government of the Republic of Slovenia from 1992-1993". Archived from the original on 2009-12-09. Retrieved 2009-04-08.
  3. Janko Prunk, "Janez Janša in njegova stranka po štirih letih na oblasti: L'État, c'est moi!". Delo, 16 September 2008 (p. 5)
  4. Interview[permanent dead link] in Mag magazine Archived 2009-02-10 at the Wayback Machine (2008)
  5. Second session Archived 2008-08-03 at the Wayback Machine of the Slovenian-Croatian historical commission (2005)
  6. Slovensko-hrvaška zgodovinska komisija: Odnosi predvsem dobri in Dnevnik Magazine 2 December 2005
  7. Slovenian Historia Archived 2008-12-31 at the Wayback Machine (Finnish translation)
  8. The creation of the Republic of Slovenia and its development

Other websites

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Political offices
Preceded by
Janez Dular
Minister for Slovenes outside Slovenia and for National Minorities in Slovenia
14 May 1992–25 January 1993
Succeeded by
Office abolished