Russia: A Society in Transition
Our achievement motivation study data were obtained in the late 1990s from a population who began their schooling in Soviet times and whose childhoods will have differed greatly from preceding or subsequent generations. From the securities and certainties of the Soviet system they must now confront an unpredictable and, for many, daunting future. Perusal of the contemporary Russian social science literature provides a stark image of a society where there is immense anxiety about changing values and behaviour on the part of the country’s young people; for many social commentators, the situation is critical. The long-term impact upon youngsters of the sudden and dramatic social change across much of Eastern Europe during the 1990s is still unclear although there is some evidence to suggest that the effects upon children varied according to relatively small differences in age (Van Hoorn et al., 2000). Given such rapid change, the views and perspectives reported in this book may not wholly reflect those of the current generation of school children in St Petersburg. Certainly, it would appear that our studies took place at a transitional period when schooling was seen as a means of maintaining some sense of order and stability (Alexander, 2000; O’Brien, 2000), yet also was beginning to become challenged by shifting goals and values.
KeywordsYoung People Educational Performance Soviet System Soviet Time Street Trader
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