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Before and After: the Phenomenon of Czechoslovakia’s “Velvet” Revolution in Narratives by its “Youngest Witnesses”.

Pred a po: fenomén „nežnej“ revolúcie v rozprávaniach jej „najmladších pamätníkov“

Soňa Lutherová

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Rok, strany / Year, pages: 2010, 671-690

Jazyk / Language: \/slo

Publikované / Published: 0000-00-00

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Before and After: the Phenomenon of Czechoslovakia’s “Velvet” Revolution in Narratives by its “Youngest Witnesses”. Autobiographical narratives of childhood often constitute a part of the research in social sciences, yet there is a long-term lack of methodological debate on this subject. It is clear that autobiographical narratives themselves are not objective records of the individuals' memories. In relation to this, when focusing on adults reminiscing specifically on an era of their childhood, researchers have to keep in mind that their subjects do not merely construct an image of the past - simultaneously, they construct an image of their own childhood as well. The aim of this paper is to consider the basic characteristics of this specific type of data by means of analyzing the narratives of the “youngest” witnesses of the period delineated by the revolution of 1989 in Czechoslovakia. Also, it reveals common traits in the way the witnesses construct their narratives in relation to the phenomenon of the “Velvet” revolution. Thus, the collected material does not only constitute a means for the analysis of autobiographical narratives of childhood as a special type of data, but also of the aspects and features of the myth of revolution of 1989 and its place in the interpretation of the contemporary Slovak society. Sociológia 2010, Vol. 42 (No. 6: 671-690)

Before and After: the Phenomenon of Czechoslovakia’s “Velvet” Revolution in Narratives by its “Youngest Witnesses”. Autobiographical narratives of childhood often constitute a part of the research in social sciences, yet there is a long-term lack of methodological debate on this subject. It is clear that autobiographical narratives themselves are not objective records of the individuals' memories. In relation to this, when focusing on adults reminiscing specifically on an era of their childhood, researchers have to keep in mind that their subjects do not merely construct an image of the past - simultaneously, they construct an image of their own childhood as well. The aim of this paper is to consider the basic characteristics of this specific type of data by means of analyzing the narratives of the “youngest” witnesses of the period delineated by the revolution of 1989 in Czechoslovakia. Also, it reveals common traits in the way the witnesses construct their narratives in relation to the phenomenon of the “Velvet” revolution. Thus, the collected material does not only constitute a means for the analysis of autobiographical narratives of childhood as a special type of data, but also of the aspects and features of the myth of revolution of 1989 and its place in the interpretation of the contemporary Slovak society. Sociológia 2010, Vol. 42 (No. 6: 671-690)

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Kľúčové slová / Keywords:

autobiographical narratives; Velvet revolution; 1989; childhood; myth

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