Their unprecedented participation in the 2017 rallies in Russia shows that these kids care about their future. Hence, it is worth keeping in mind the words of sociologist and researcher Svetlana Erpyleva who writes: “During the recent anti-corruption rallies in Russia, young people spoke out not only against the dishonesty of power and lack of political freedom in the country, but also against the unfair distribution of income between different groups, the inaccessible medical services, the high fees for student housing and growing food prices.” Not surprisingly, this potential is extremely tempting for politicians who – be it by direct communication (Alexei Navalny) or official instruction and historical policy (the Kremlin) try to shape their minds. As our authors note there is an increase of the latter, be it in Russia, Belarus or Ukraine, which causes us to reflect on the effectiveness of the methods used (such as a single interpretation of history in Russia or Belarus, or the new education reform in Ukraine) and the context in which they are introduced.
If recent events can teach us anything, radical political change does not take place in the classroom, or in accordance with official rhetoric. Thus, while the immediate outcome of the March 2018 Russian presidential election may already be known, the long-term changes in the region are much more difficult to foresee, especially if we ignore the aspirations and values of these adolescents and young adults. With this in mind, we wish you an inspiring reading of this issue.
New Eastern Europe is a new bi-monthly magazine dedicated to Central and Eastern European affairs. The magazine is the sister edition of the Polish version Nowa Europa Wschodnia, which has been on the Polish market since 2008. Countries in particular focus in New Eastern Europe include Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, as well the Caucasus region - Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Chechnya, etc.
Articles in New Eastern Europe focus on a wide range of social, political and cultural issues facing this region. The journal includes original opinion and analytical texts; historical accounts; reports from correspondents in the countries with full colour photos; and reviews of books, music and film about and emerging from Eastern Europe.