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Article

Everyday Consumption of Russian Youth in Small Towns and Villages

Sociologia Ruralis. 2018. Vol. 58. No. 3. P. 644-664.

The article analyses everyday consumption of young people who live in villages and small towns in modern-day Russia. Based on 59 semi-structured interviews conducted in three districts of Leningrad region (close to St. Petersburg), the authors try to answer the following questions. How does everyday consumption fit in biographical experience of rural youth? What consumption styles are implemented in small towns and villages? The conceptual framework of the analysis is the category of ‘rural-urban continuum’, which underscores blurred boundaries between ‘the city’ and ‘the countryside’, transformation of traditional rural forms of sociality and mutual diffusion of elements of the rural and urban lifestyles. The authors come to the conclusion that differentiation of consumption styles of modern rural residents can be explained in the context of life strategies, construed on the basis of family capital, education, employment and orientation towards success. The article describes four basic styles that characterise consumption of young rural residents: the ‘family’, ‘status-oriented’, ‘individualistic’ and ‘conformist’ styles.