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Fallen Vanguards and Vanished Rebels? Political Youth Involvement in Extraordinary Times

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Eastern European Youth Cultures in a Global Context

Abstract

When the ‘Colour Revolutions’ swept across some post-communist countries in the early 2000s, western commentators portrayed a new pro-European generation striving to overcome the looming Soviet legacy.1 Nadia Diuk (2006) from the National Endowment for Democracy described youth as the vanguard for political change,2 and academics echoed visions of radical and idealistic youth (Cheterian, 2009, p. 143; Lane, 2009, p. 129; White, 2009, p. 406). This idea about youth had travelled a long way since it became consensual in the West during the 1970s.3 However, enthusiasm about the political implications of the ‘Colour Revolutions’ vanished once the ambiguity of diffusion, which ultimately contributed to democracy prevention in Russia (Horvath, 2011; Finkel and Brudny, 2012) and Belarus (Korosteleva, 2012), was realised. Analysis of Russia’s current youth ought to consider this dual effect of the ‘Colour Revolutions’ and pay attention for the diverse and contradictory political engagements of young people.

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© 2016 Félix Krawatzek

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Krawatzek, F. (2016). Fallen Vanguards and Vanished Rebels? Political Youth Involvement in Extraordinary Times. In: Schwartz, M., Winkel, H. (eds) Eastern European Youth Cultures in a Global Context. Palgrave Macmillan, London. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137385130_11

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137385130_11

  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, London

  • Print ISBN: 978-1-349-55912-1

  • Online ISBN: 978-1-137-38513-0

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