Rusyns and Andy Warhol

In a Time Magazine series entitled "The Lost Tribes of Europe", the Rusyns of Slovakia made the list. Naturally, the man who is easily the most famous Rusyn, Andy Warhol, is noted prominantly...and you might be surprised to learn about Andy's religious side. See also HERE

I would contend that not ALL Rusyns were Greek Catholic, though clearly the vast majority were. My family was, but whereas they were able to peacefully remain faithful to their more Orthodox traditions in Slovakia, the differences became more personally apparent amidst the coal towns of eastern Pennsylvania.

It is interesting to note the change of self-identification between 1910 and 2001. The 1910 data is based on a census I am familiar with via my genealogical research. At the time, my Great Grandparents village called Juskova Vola was listed as "Rusyn" by which we mean to say that greater than half the respondants claimed to be Rusyn, but today when I ask the mayor of the village (yes, believe it or not, I have semi-regular dialogues with the mayor of a tiny Slovakian Village with about 300 inhabitants) about the town's Rusyn past he says he doesn't think anyone there would consider themselves Rusyn...rather they are Slovaks.

As the Time article illustrates (and by the way, the Rusyns aren't ONLY in Slovakia, they are in a variety of other countries as well), Rusyns have been assimilated over the past century or so and only in recently times has there been a resurgance of interest in preserving their unique culture.

Here is the World Academy of Rusyn Culture.


Mimi said…
My Godmother is Rusyn.

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