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Popular Music in Communist and Post-Communist Europe

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Edited By Jan Blüml, Yvetta Kajanová and Rüdiger Ritter

Through selected topics, the book presents an up-to-date and comprehensive view of the popular music of communist and post-communist Europe. The studies introduce new sources, discuss transformations of the institutional background of popular music of the given geopolitical sphere, its social, cultural-political, or artistic conditions. Thanks to the time span of nearly thirty years since the fall of the Iron Curtain, the authors have in many ways revised or supplemented traditional post-communist perceptions of the issues in question. This is being done with respect to the genres such as jazz, rock, pop, singer-songwriters, hip-hop, or White Power Music, as well as across the whole region from the former Yugoslavia through Central European states to the countries of the former Soviet Union.

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The Transmutation of Czech Youth Musical Films during the Era of State Socialism

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Abstract: This study focuses on the depiction of the generational gap as featured in Czech musical films targeting the young, specifically their role in mediating the negotiation of hegemonic generational consensus. The cinematic representation of this gap was transmuted over the course of the second half of the twentieth century in accordance with ongoing political and social changes. Successful youth films were produced by the elite of the established generation for the emerging generation and will be analysed as an example of the negotiation of the era’s perception of the generational gap.

Keywords: generation gap; generational cohorts; hegemonic consensus; socialist Czechoslovakia; youth musical films; Stalinism; Prague Spring; liberalization; revolt; societal change

Producers of popular culture in the mid-twentieth century discovered and fully utilized a new target group, youth. The transition phase between childhood and adulthood became definitively separated as a specific target.

Generational Cohorts. The concept of generational cohorts is used to describe groups of individuals born and raised during the same historic period and thus influenced by similar social and political conditions experienced in a shared life period. Despite all differences in individual development, family background and other circumstances, the same set of dominant narratives, explanations, and various ideologies (both dominant and resistant) influence the teenagers’ and adolescent’s experience.1

During the second half of the twentieth century Czechoslovak adolescents adopted values and attitudes different to those of preceding generations especially due the swift regime and ideological changes that marked...

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