The Last Yugoslav Generation: The Rethinking of Youth Politics and Cultures in Late Socialism

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Manchester University Press, 2017 - 220 pages
The 1980s saw a challenge unfolding within the institutional youth sphere to established norms and practices in late-Yugoslav politics, media and culture. Whilst many studies have focused on the powerful tensions that led to Yugoslavia's dismemberment, this book reminds us of the existence of countervailing forces, embodied most powerfully in the political and cultural work of a young Yugoslav generation. Using a combination of oral history interviews, archival documents and print media sources in several languages of the former Yugoslavia, this book examines the challenge to the socialism of the older generation. It demonstrates a deep commitment to the reforming of the federation, based both on leftist and liberal principles. Following the activities of the 'League of Socialist Youth of Yugoslavia' on multiple fronts, the book shows how an organisation that was an integral part of the country's political system provided a venue for critiquing and challenging the norms of an older generation and reinventing socialism. This ambitious study provides unique insight into this generation's sense of 'multi-layered citizenship', the complex relationship between what is considered 'alternative' or 'oppositional' and 'institutional' or 'official', and into the intricacies in the youth's interaction with the state. The last Yugoslav generation will be of particular interest to those in the fields of Yugoslav, Southeast and East European History and Politics. Book jacket.

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About the author (2017)

Ljubica Spaskovska is Lecturer in European History at the University of Exeter

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