The socialist modernization project envisioned childhood as a utopian ideal, and children as an embodiment of a new social order. However, living socialism often meant something quite different compared to its official interpretations on both sides of the Iron Curtain. We discuss the importance of exploring personal memories to gain a more complex understanding of childhood and the (post)socialist lived experience. Following the critique of the dominant narratives about childhood, we invite an epistemological, ontological , and methodological rethinking of assumptions about how we approach research. We highlight the diversity of the region’s histories, individual lived experiences, and the multiple ways of being a (post)socialist child. We close with an overview of the book and afterwords that connect the contributions to different disciplinary fields.
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Efforts worldwide to operationalize the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) created spaces for children to become part of societies and act on their own rights rather than being considered only as members of families. Seeing children as competent actors who have views on their lives and can make decisions, in turn, helped to change children’s role in societies, allowing them to get involved in more and more realms, such as different parliaments or participatory projects designed to seek children’s views about issues that concern them.
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Piattoeva, N., Silova, I., Millei, Z. (2018). Remembering Childhoods, Rewriting (Post)Socialist Lives. In: Silova, I., Piattoeva, N., Millei, Z. (eds) Childhood and Schooling in (Post)Socialist Societies. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-62791-5_1
Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
Print ISBN: 978-3-319-62790-8
Online ISBN: 978-3-319-62791-5