Chapter

Introduction

Olga Kucherenko

in Little Soldiers

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199585557
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725043 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199585557.003.0001
Introduction

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The aim of this study is to reconstruct the ideological, social, and economic context in which children were more likely to engage in hostilities, as well as investigate the nature of their participation, and the role of the state in their inducement and recruitment. Child-soldiering is examined here as a social phenomenon produced by both Soviet upbringing and wartime experiences. Since Soviet child-combatants were the product of the society from which they emerged, it is not just a study of their physical and psychological state at the front, but the analysis of the entire society and its social and ideological practices. The examination of the interrelationship between Soviet patriotic culture and behaviour shows that the actions of individual children were influenced as much by Soviet ideology and shared values as by the idiosyncrasies of adolescence and the reality of warfare.

Keywords: child; patriotic culture; propaganda; motivations; agency; memory; ideology

Chapter.  10329 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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