Thinking through memories of childhood in (post)socialist spaces: ordinary lives in extraordinary times

Zsuzsa Millei, Iveta Silova, Susanne Gannon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


In the history of modernity, childhood represents societies’ hopes and desires for the future. An offspring of modernity, the socialist project had a unique preoccupation with children and childhood for the social (re)making of societies. However, research on both sides of the Iron Curtain has explored children’s lives in socialist societies by focusing on the organised efforts of state socialisation, largely overlooking how childhoods were actually experienced. In this article, first, we delve into the utility of memory stories for exploring childhoods and children’s everyday lives in a variety of socialist spaces. Second, we explicate how memory stories about everyday life can serve as data for cultural-political analysis. We aim to show how ‘thinking through’ memory stories enables us to learn about childhood and children’s lives and to gain access to historical socio-political discourses and practices. We conclude with the relevance of our discussion for engagements with current global problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)324-337
Number of pages14
JournalChildren's Geographies
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2022


  • Memory stories
  • becoming
  • collective biography
  • knowledge production
  • socialism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Sociology and Political Science


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