Jūratė Regina Statkutė de Rosales (9 September 1929 – 4 September 2023): Lithuanian-Venezuelan Journalist and Historian
Jūratė Regina Statkutė de Rosales was a notable Lithuanian-born Venezuelan journalist and amateur historian recognized for her research challenging traditional historical perspectives regarding the ethnicity of the Goths. Born on 9 September 1929 in Kaunas, Lithuania, her early years were marked by political turmoil as her father, Jonas Statkus, a high-ranking official, was arrested in 1940 amidst Soviet actions in Lithuania.
Rosales’ academic journey led her to France, where she learned Latin and French, eventually earning a teaching degree in French. She continued her studies at Columbia University in New York, expanding her linguistic repertoire to include English, Spanish, and German. In 1960, she married Venezuelan engineer Luis Rosales, and they raised a multilingual family, instilling both Spanish and Lithuanian in their children.
Her intellectual pursuits included serving as the editor-in-chief of the Venezuelan opposition magazine Zeta starting in 1983, as well as contributing to Venezuelan daily paper El Nuevo País and the Cleveland-based Dirva. Rosales was honored with a doctorate from the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences.
One of her significant contributions was her hypothesis challenging prevailing views on the ethnicity of the Goths. She argued, based on extensive research, that the Goths were Baltic, not Germanic as conventionally believed. This perspective can be traced back to Prussian scholar Matthäus Prätorius in the 17th century and had been supported by various Lithuanian historians and linguists. However, this idea faced criticism from other academics who labeled it as pseudohistory driven by nationalist rather than academic motives.
Jūratė Regina Statkutė de Rosales passed away in Caracas on 4 September 2023, leaving behind a legacy of challenging established historical narratives and encouraging critical reevaluation of historical perspectives.