Black C., Romashova M. V. From A schoolchild to the Red Army soldier: ways of growing up and everyday practices in post-revolutionary society (.pdf)

 

The authors review Alexander Rozhkov's book “In the circle of peers” dedicated to the worldlife of boys and girls of the Soviet Russia in the 1920s. On the basis of diverse and multiple sources, the author of the reviewed book analyzes the ideas and everyday practices of young people in real peer groups and beyond - in interaction with adults (parents, teachers, university professors, commanders, etc.). Research focus on youth and adolescence gives the opportunity to look at the problem of the young generation growing up in post-revolutionary Soviet society, where maturity and old age for some time ceased to be the norm. Youth became the object of discussions and practical actions of politicians, scholars, teachers, and doctors on the subject of forming the “new” socialized and ideologically educated adults. But Rozhkov sees boys and girls not only as the objects of manipulation and educational policies, but as equal co-participants doing the “big” history, resisting, rebelling, rejecting, consuming, disenchanted and inspired. The book extremely enriches our understanding of the 1920s Soviet Russia. Even those who do research in politics and economics will get a lot from the social context described by Rozhkov. The work will be a model for the research of everyday life and social history of the New Economic Policy era for a very long time.

 

Key words: youth and adolescence, everyday life, peers, the New Economic Policy, school, higher education institution, the Red Army.

 

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