Фитнес-культура как инновационная социальная практика современной российской молодежи
This article considers how the study of youth cultural practice in Eastern Europe informs theoretical and empirical debate about youth culture. It charts the trajectory of academic writing on East
European youth cultures and suggests the region’s state socialist past (which made social inequalities relatively insigniﬁcant at a time when, elsewhere, youth cultural studies were dominated by
class-based readings) combined with the explosion of inequality in the post-socialist period (by which time class-resistant post-subcultural theories led anglophone academic discussion), makes it
an interesting vantage point from which to reconsider academic paradigms. Drawing on empirical examples of youth cultural practice in (post)-socialist Eastern Europe, it argues for a perspective that integrates structural and cultural factors shaping young people’s lives. It suggests moving forward western theoretical debates – often stymied in arguments over nomenclature (‘subculture’, ‘postsubculture’, ‘neo-tribe’) – by shifting the focus of study from ‘form’ (‘subculture’ etc.) to ‘substance’ (concrete cultural practices) and attending to everyday communicative, musical, sporting, educational, informal economy, and territorial practices. Since such practices are embedded in the ‘whole’ rather than ‘subcultural’ lives of young people, this renders visible how cultural practices are enabled and constrained by the same social divisions and inequalities that structure society at large.
The paper presents an analysis of the key events associated with changes in youth culture and civic activities in modern Russia, occurring during the first decade of the 21 st century. Discursive representations of youth typical for this period (government programs directed toward the youth theme, media projects, activist initiatives), as well as policy responses to the growth of youth activities, including projects of youth mobilization, are also discussed. A key event - the financial and economic crisis (recession) in 2008 - is regarded as a turning point / the turn of the century, which particularly affected the reconceptualization of the youth question in modern Russia in different dimensions: political-activist, patriotic, urban, subcultural and others. In this article we suggest a new focus of considering new forms of youth activism, through the prism of the solidarity approach. We analyze key trends in new youth solidarities in the political, cultural and economic dimensions.