Collective Practices and Control Culture: Soviet Youth in Leningrad (1960–1972)
This dissertation reconstructs subcultural practices of young people in Soviet Leningrad in the 1960s as a multi-actor interaction process. In the post-war decades, young people in the Soviet Union strove to distinguish themselves from mainstream Soviet society through their personal style, consumption practices, lifestyles and atypical and provocative behavior. Agents of control culture, such as party authorities, the police, managers of the state-sponsored entertainment, and sociologists portrayed the subcultural practices of the youth in terms of juvenile delinquency, the result of “Western influences”, resistance, and decadence. By examining how the narratives about youth and their subcultural practices have been constructed by various observers (local city authorities and the police, journalists and sociologists) as well as by the young people themselves, this project traces the history of Soviet youth in the 1960s, taking into account not only students but also young people from working-class backgrounds.