Searching for a Homeland in Foreign Lands. Integration Patterns in Host Societies Analysed on the Basis of Alphabet Book Content for Russian Schools in Limitrophe States in the First Third of the Twentieth Century
The paper examines the content of ABC-books published for Russian-speaking children in Latvia, Estonia and Poland in 1920’s, and explicates the nexus between socio-cultural context and representation of social environment and child’s interactions to explore strategies of adaptation offered to children. The textbooks were quantified using a target codifier. The results are embedded in the context of theories of intergenerational cultural transmission and integration of minorities. The textbooks published for Russian-speaking children in Poland and Estonia exemplify a classical post-figurative type of intergenerational transmission to ensure group cohesion protecting from assimilation. The model of transmission in ABC-books published in Latvia is based on encouraging a child to establish values and guidelines independently. Thus, Latvian ABC-books allow a child to join a network of tenuous relationships for integration into a dominant culture. So, the study provides a retrospection to strategies of the Russian-speaking minorities’ consolidation and integration into the dominant societies.