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Kronikáři o životní úrovni. Konzum a politika na českém venkově v letech 1945–1980

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Title in English Chroniclers write about the standard of living. Consumption and politics in the Czech countryside in 1945-1980


Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Folia ethnographica: Supplementa ad Acta Musei Moraviae, Scientiae sociales
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Web Domovská stránka časopisu
Keywords standard of living; consumption; countryside; 1950s-1970s
Description In the text I focus on the understanding of the inhabitants of socialist Czechoslovakia as consumers. Based on a study of a set of 75 municipal chronicles from the Czech lands from 1945-1980, I argue that the population of the period cannot be viewed as a homogeneous group in terms of consumerism. We find a diversity of actors in terms of their achieved standard of living, their satisfaction with it, but also in terms of their consumer appetite, i.e. their demands for goods. The population was also not united in thinking about the relationship between the standard of living and the legitimacy of the communist regime. These findings help to challenge the contemporary view of the exclusive role of consumerism and the demand for a higher standard of living by the population when the communist regime collapsed in the late 1980s.
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