Tag: youth culture

Gopnik’s Galore

Following the hard economic times of the early 1980’s, a new class of citizen was born. They are called the ‘Gopnik.’ It is a derogatory Russian slang word for male and female Russian youth around the age of 25, normally stemming from the lower classes of Soviet society. In America, they would be considered rednecks …

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The lads of Liubertsy

In the latter half of the 20th century, western culture flooded the Soviet Union. Soviet youth enjoyed denim jeans, rock music, and Coca-Cola. Many of them began to identify as punk-rockers or hippies. The young men of Liubertsy (a suburb outside of right  Moscow), however, saw the popularity of western culture as a threat to …

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When I Was Young We Played Outside

https://softlot.ru/sn/fireplaces/what-tvs-were-in-the-ussr-kvn-and-others-soviet-tvs.html For all of those people like me who grew up with Nintendo and television I am sure the above title had been said at one point or another by your parents. It would seem in this regard, the Soviet youth were hearing these decades in advance. According to this news article from the Digest […]

Power in Peace: The International Youth Festival

The World Youth Festival is, “an event of global youth solidarity for democracy and against war and imperialism” created with the intention, “to bring together young people of both the socialist and capitalist countries to promote peaceful cooperation and mutual rejection of war.” It indeed makes a great deal of sense that in the newfound …

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Vasily Aksyonov and the stilyagi movement

In the 40’s and 50’s and unexpected love of American culture blossomed in the Soviet Union. These young people were called “stilyagi.” The stilyagi were identified by their love of Western fashion and music. In Leningrad (and eventually Moscow) the stilyagi wore narrow trousers and long, unusually colored (by Soviet standards) jackets. They also wore …

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Before the West was Cool: Soviet Hipsters in the 1950s

I first discovered the stilyagi of the fifties when I saw a movie on Kanopy called Hipsters (2008). Set in 1955 Moscow, the film follows a Komsomol member who falls in love with one these stilyagi. A term for nonconformist, Western-oriented youths, the word stilyagi carried a highly negative connotation in Soviet society. Bonus: Listen to a song about hipsters (written by hipsters) while…