Juliane Fürst

in Stalin's Last Generation

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780199575060
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595141 | DOI:

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This chapter takes a detailed look at the years which removed the veil of silence from late Stalinism — not because late Stalinism became the explicit subject of many discussions, but rather because the life and culture of the years 1953–6 made visible (and audible) what had been growing under the heavy blanket of late Stalinist rule for many years. A quick glance beyond 1956 gives an impression of what happened to Soviet youth culture — both official and unofficial. The story of the Komsomol's spiritual decline and the rise of informal youth cultures is punctuated by various, ultimately ineffective, attempts to reinvigorate the Soviet youth project. Komsomol, official Soviet youth culture, and the Soviet Union itself all came to an abrupt end in 1991. Yet this book's final observations remind the reader of the curious fact that the last chapter of the history of Soviet youth is still happening.

Keywords: Soviet Union; youth culture; young people; Stalinism; Komsomol; culture; Soviet youth project

Chapter.  9997 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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