Myth-making in Everyday Life: The ‘West’ in Childhood Memories and (Post)socialist Futures

Mnemo ZIN

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Mnemo ZIN, Myth-making in Everyday Life: The ‘West’ in Childhood Memories and (Post)socialist Futures (26.09.2023), Beltz Juventa, 69469 Weinheim, ISSN: 0514-2717, 2023 #1, S.215


Beschreibung / Abstract

Although postsocialism is often discussed in terms of revisiting and dispelling the myths of the socialist past, this article suggests that it is more productive to understand postsocialism in terms of different kinds of mythic constructions – ‘myths from the future’, namely the myths of the capitalist West and East. Situating our research in the historical context of the Cold War, we approach the study of mythic constructions in state socialist and postsocialist societies through the analysis of childhood memories. In particular, we focus on how mythic constructs relate to mundane objects and everyday life as a lens through which to understand and evaluate experiences and the creation of socialist subjectivities during both late socialism and postsocialism. We aim to explore the ways in which memory narrators – those who are sharing childhood memories today – make sense of their past experiences and how they bring up and relate to these mythic constructs today. In our analysis of memories, we spotlight myths as they unfold in children’s everyday life, while illustrating how these myths continue to animate the past and present, while contributing to collective memory.

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