Youth Movement

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Youth Movement


the struggle of youth to satisfy its socioeconomic and political demands; also, youth’s participation in the general political struggle. In an antagonistic class society, the youth movement includes various currents that reflect the social structure of the society. Each current is associated with the interests of specific classes and social groups. In the socialist countries youth is an active participant in the struggle of all the people for the development of a socialist economic system and culture, socialist social relations, peace, and social progress.

As early as the first half of the 19th century, youth (primarily students) formed their own organizations (unions) and participated in the struggle against despotism and feudal reaction in Germany and several other European countries, as well as in the national liberation movement of oppressed peoples. The development of a mass socialist working-class movement in the progressive countries of Europe in the second half of the 19th century contributed to the differentiation of the youth movement. Working-class youth and progressive young men and women from different classes and social groups joined or supported the working-class movement. At the same time, conservative youth organizations and societies became active. In the 1880’s and 1890’s, Christian youth organizations, which were both political and religious, were established in a number of countries, including Great Britain, the USA, France, and Germany. International Christian youth associations were founded: in 1855, the World Alliance of Young Men’s Christian Associations; in 1894, the World Young Christian Women’s Association; and in 1895, the World Student Christian Federation. The scout movement was founded in 1907–08.

Student youth played an important role in Russian public life from the mid-19th century “and particularly in the late 19th century and the early 20th. Social Democratic students were prominent among the leaders of the St. Petersburg Union of Struggle for the Emancipation of the Working Class. In addition to the Social Democrats, however, bourgeois democratic, liberal (including “academic”), and openly reactionary currents developed in the student youth movement. Although he viewed this demarcation of currents as a necessary and progressive process, V. I. Lenin observed that it should not lead to the disintegration of all nonparty student organizations associated with academic and other general student interests.

During the Revolution of 1905–07 radical students, who had participated in the general democratic movement, frequently supported the Bolsheviks and fought in the ranks of the revolutionary proletariat. “The radical students,” wrote Lenin, “who both in St. Petersburg and Moscow adopted the slogans of revolutionary social democracy, are the vanguard of all the democratic forces. . . . [T]hese forces gravitate toward a real and decisive struggle against the accursed enemy of the Russian people rather than toward a policy of bargaining with the autocracy”(Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 11, pp. 351–52). During the years of reaction and particularly during the period of a new revolutionary upsurge, political actions by the students were important in Russian public life.

Unions of socialist working-class youth were organized in the early 20th century in almost all European countries, particularly where there were powerful Social Democratic parties (Belgium, Austria, Germany, and Sweden, for example). These unions contributed to the development of a socialist world view among youth, fought against capitalist exploitation, and conducted antimilitarist propaganda. Lenin attached great importance to work among youth. On the suggestion of Lenin and Rosa Luxemburg an amendment pointing out the necessity of bringing up working-class youth in the spirit of socialism and with a consciousness of the fraternity of peoples was added to the resolution On Militarism and International Conflicts by the Stuttgart Congress of the Second International in 1907 (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 16, p. 75).

The striving for unity by organizations of toiling youth in various countries was rewarded soon after the Stuttgart Congress, when the First International Conference of Socialist Youth Organizations was organized in Stuttgart. It adopted a decision on the creation of the Socialist Youth International.

The Bern International Socialist Conference of Youth of 1915 was held during World War I (1914-18). Participants correctly characterized the war as imperialist. However, unable to overcome the influence of centrism, they refused to adopt a resolution presented by the delegation of the Bolshevik Party, declaring the necessity of using revolutionary methods of struggle against the war. The conference adopted a resolution calling for the annual observance of International Youth Day (celebrated until 1945).

The October Revolution of 1917, the victory of which owed a great deal to worker and peasant youth, had an enormous revolutionizing effect on the capitalist world and the colonial countries and promoted the growth of the world revolutionary youth movement. Founded in October 1918, the Russian Communist League of Youth (from 1926, the All-Union Lenin Communist Youth League) became part of the world revolutionary youth movement. After the establishment of the Communist International in March 1919, revolutionary youth organizations in many countries proclaimed their agreement with its programmatic documents. In April of that year the Central Committee of the Russian Communist League of Youth proposed the creation of the Communist Youth International (KIM). Lenin participated directly in the development of its program and bylaws.

The First Constitutional Congress of the KIM, which met illegally in Berlin on Nov. 20, 1919, was attended by representatives of youth leagues and organizations that had accepted the political platform of the Third International. The international communist youth movement had acquired an organizational center. In December 1919 the International Congress of Communist and Socialist Student Organizations of Western Europe convened in Geneva. Its participants affirmed their support of the Comintern and their solidarity with the working class. The congress of student organizations voiced its support of the decisions of the First Congress of the KIM and announced its merger with it.

In many countries, young people participated in the revolutionary battles of 1918–23, including the November Revolution of 1918 (Germany); the September Antifascist Uprising of 1923 (Bulgaria); the Hamburg Uprising of 1923; the struggle of the working class in Finland, Hungary, France, and Italy; and revolutionary actions by the working people in various countries. The struggle in defense of the Soviet Republic, which was conducted under the slogan “Hands off Soviet Russia,’* was of paramount importance in the activities of foreign working-class youth organizations. Even in the first years after the October Revolution, Soviet Komsomol members extended fraternal assistance, including material aid in the form of collections and deductions from wages, to young foreign participants in the revolutionary struggle. At that time, Komsomol members, many of whom took up weapons and fought as soldiers, were defending Soviet power under the extremely difficult conditions of the Civil War, foreign intervention, hunger, and devastation.

The constructive labor of Komsomol members and of all Soviet youth stengthened the economic system of the world’s first socialist state and was of genuine assistance to the international revolutionary movement, including the revolutionary youth movement. Soviet youth made a significant contribution to carrying out the tasks of cultural construction and restoring and developing the national economy, as well as to the general struggle of the working people of the USSR for the victory of socialism, for peace, and for social progress.

The KIM, which directed the work of bringing up young people in the spirit of Leninist ideas, had to surmount many difficulties as well as many mistakes, particularly avant-garde tendencies manifested by a number of young activists who, proceeding from a fully justified distrust of social reformist leaders, extended this feeling at times to all party leadership of the youth movement and did not immediately declare their readiness to work under the leadership of the Communist parties. After discussing the problems of the Communist youth movement, the Third Congress of the Comintern concluded that in the interests of the general struggle, Communist youth organizations, while preserving their organizational independence, must submit to the political leadership of the Communist parties and merge into a united revolutionary front. The Second Congress of the KIM (July 1921) approved these decisions.

During the period of the partial relative stabilization of capitalism (1924-29), the struggle against the members of right-wing and left-wing (Trotskyite) factions was, as in the years that followed, one of the most important aspects of the activity of the KIM and its sections. Carrying out the united front tactics adopted in Comintern decisions, in August 1925 the Executive Committee of the KIM directed an “Open Letter” to the Executive Committee of the Socialist Youth International, proposing the creation of a united front of working-class youth against the threat of an imperialist war. However, the Socialist Youth International and various national organizations of socialist youth did not respond to this appeal. Many of the leaders of these organizations disseminated anti-Soviet and anti-Communist ideas among young people.

In the early 1930’s, the rising threat of fascism made it imperative for all democratic forces, including democratic youth, to take united action. The struggle against elements of sectarianism in the communist youth movement called for the establishment of unity. The Sixth Congress of the KIM (September-October 1935) called for the fulfillment of these tasks by communist youth. Proceeding from the positions adopted by the Seventh Congress of the Comintern, which had elaborated the tactic of the popular front, the Sixth Congress of the KIM developed a new political line and appealed to young people to unite into mass, nonparty youth organizations.

Adhering to the decisions of the congress, the Communist youth leagues drew closer to the socialist youth organizations in their common struggle against fascism. In Spain, Belgium, Mexico, and Iceland, Communist and socialist youth organizations merged. Joint associations were established in a number of other countries, including France and Bulgaria. In these youth agencies of the popular front, the youth leagues maintained their organizational independence but cooperated on the basis of agreement on urgent issues in the struggle for the rights of youth and against reaction and fascism.

Among the important events in the history of the antifascist youth movement were the International Youth Congress (Paris, September 1933), the World Student Congress (Brussels, December 1934), the International Youth Antiwar Conference (Paris, May 1935), and the First World Youth Antiwar Congress (Geneva, August-September 1936), which was attended by more than 700 representatives of youth organizations of various political orientations from 36 countries, including the USSR. Other milestones in the antifascist youth movement were the meeting of the leaders of the KIM and the Socialist Youth International (Spain, July 1937); the International Congress of Socialist and Communist Students, at which the International Student Alliance was formed (Paris, July 1937); and the Second World Youth Congress for Peace (USA, Vassar College, August 1938). During the National Revolutionary War of the Spanish People (1936-39), approximately 40,000 young internationalists from 50 countries, including Soviet Komsomol members, fought in Spain in defense of the Spanish Republic.

However, the efforts of young Communists to unite young people of various political currents, including socialists, into a united antifascist front, continued to meet with resistance from the leaders of the Socialist Youth International. In 1939 the Congress of the Socialist Youth International excluded the socialist youth of Spain because they had cooperated with the Communists. The youth antiwar movement of the prewar period, which had almost 40 million members, laid the foundation for a new upsurge in the democratic youth movement in the years that followed.

During the period between the two world wars, clerical and educational young people’s associations were organized. Their goal was to distract broad strata of youth from direct participation in politics and to draw their attention to the “special problems” of youth. During this period student unions, which united students at universities and other higher educational institutions on a purely corporative basis emphasizing specific student interests, were established in the majority of the Western European countries. Ultrareactionary fascist youth organizations were also founded. In the countries where the fascists had come to power (Italy, Germany, and Spain), youth organizations became a part of the fascist state-party machinery.

During World War II (1939-45), millions of young men and women from various social strata fought against fascism. Young people fought in the Allied armies or participated in the Resistance movement. In occupied countries, youth organizations actively and selflessly waged an antifascist struggle. The youth of various countries responded passionately to the appeal “To the Youth of the World,” which was adopted on Sept. 28, 1941, in Moscow at an anti-fascist meeting of Soviet youth. At this meeting, the Antifascist Committee of Soviet Youth was formed (from 1956, the Committee of Youth Organizations of the USSR). Antifascist youth associations were also founded in other countries of the anti-Hitler coalition.

International youth solidarity grew stronger under the complex wartime conditions. In 1941, students from countries fighting against fascism gathered in London and declared November 17 (the date of a bloody reprisal by the Hitlerites against Czech students in Prague in 1939) International Students’ Day. The International Student Conference was held in the USA in 1942. The International Youth Conference, which was held in London in late 1942, elected the World Youth Council. (Soviet representatives, as well as representatives from other countries, were elected to the council and to its executive committee.) In 1943, antifascist students held the International Student Assembly in Washington.

These meetings paved the way for a postwar unification of the youth movement on an international level. The World Conference of Democratic Youth was held in London in October-November 1945. Among the participants were about 600 representatives from 63 countries, including young Communists, socialists, and Christians. At the final session of the conference on November 10, the participants agreed to establish the World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) to promote mutual understanding and cooperation among young people in all spheres of economic, political, social, and cultural life and in the struggle against social, national, and racial oppression and for the peace and security of the people of the world and the rights of youth. Since 1945, November 10 has been observed as International Youth Day. The First World Students’ Congress was held in Prague in August 1946. It established the International Union of Students (IUS), which proclaimed as its goal the struggle against fascism and colonialism and for peace, social progress, democratic reform of education, and the rights of students.

However, the activities of the WFDY and the IUS soon met with opposition from conservative, antidemocratic elements among their members. Convened in October 1946 in the Paris suburb of Montrouge, the Congress of Socialist Youth founded the International Union of Socialist Youth, whose leaders openly declared their anticommunist orientation. In 1947, the World Federation of Liberal and Radical Youth, an outgrowth of the International Union of Liberal and Democratic Youth (1929–40), was founded in Cambridge (Great Britain). A small group of bourgeois conservative youth organizations from 25 countries gathered in London in 1948 for a conference, the goal of which was the creation of a new international association to counterbalance the WFDY. The bylaws of a new organization, the World Assembly of Youth, were officially adopted in Brussels in August 1949. Groups whose leaders opposed the anti-imperialist and anticolonialist orientation of the IUS emerged in 1949. They prepared and convoked the International Student Conference (Edinburgh, January 1952), at which the Coordinating Secretariat of National Unions of Students (from 1964, the International Student Conference) was established as a center of opposition to the IUS.

During the postwar period, the World Alliance of Young Men’s Christian Associations, the World Young Women’s Christian Association, the World Student Christian Federation (WSCF), the World University Service (a students’ mutual aid organization that left the WSCF in 1931), and Pax Romana (a Catholic students’ organization founded in 1921 and reorganized in 1947) became more active.

Under the conditions arising from the split in the youth movement, the WFDY and the IUS waged a struggle against the cold war and imperialist aggression. They promoted a worldwide campaign of youth solidarity for the struggle of the Korean people against the armed intervention of the USA and its allies in 1950–53 and actively supported the anti-imperialist battles of the Vietnamese and Algerian patriots. Hundreds of thousands of youth organization activists collected signatures for the Stockholm Appeal and organized marches for peace and against the threat of nuclear war. Responding to the appeals of the WFDY and the IUS, progressive youth participated in actions in defense of the Cuban Revolution and against the tripartite aggression in Egypt in 1956. In various countries, February 21 (from 1949, the Day of International Solidarity With Students and Youth Fighting for National Independence) and April 24 (from 1957, the International Day of Youth Solidarity in the Struggle Against Colonialism and for Peaceful Coexistence) were observed with mass actions. The World Festivals of Youth and Students became graphic manifestations of the combative anti-imperialist solidarity of young men and women.

Youth and student conferences, seminars, and symposia to discuss the problems of strengthening peace, eliminating the colonial system, and fighting for the socioeconomic and political rights of youth and students were held in various countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. Among them were the First World Conference of Working-class Youth (Prague, 1958), the International Student Peace Conference (Prague, 1958), the World Youth Forum (Moscow, 1961), the International Conference of Youth and Students for Disarmament, Peace, and National Independence (Florence, 1964), and the World Forum of Solidarity of Youth and Students in the Fight for National Independence, Liberation, and Peace (Moscow, 1964). The WFDY, the IUS, and youth leagues organized in the socialist countries during the 1950’s and 1960’s considerably assisted youth organizations in the Arab countries and in the countries of Africa and Southeast Asia.

In the countries of the socialist commonwealth, youth leagues viewed their most important tasks as the development of a Marxist-Leninist world view among youth, the teaching of socialist patriotism and proletarian internationalism, and the attraction of youth to the work of building socialism and communism. The youth of socialist countries consider their participation in economic and cultural construction not only a patriotic duty but also an international responsibility, a contribution to the struggle of the working people of the entire world for social progress. Relations between the youth leagues of the socialist countries have developed on the basis of their common goals. The most important forms of cooperation are the exchange of experience in work for the communist upbringing of the young generation and mutual enrichment through exchange of the most effective methods of drawing youth into the task of fulfilling national economic goals and into the management of public affairs. To promote cooperation, bilateral festivals, friendship meetings, seminars, conferences, large gatherings, and reviews of the technological creativity of the youth of socialist countries have been held.

The noticeable growth in the 1960’s of the authority and influence of the WFDY and IUS as recognized centers of the youth movement was accompanied by a crisis in the two organizations, whose leaders subverted the unity of the movement by adopting anticommunist and anti-Soviet positions. In 1960 the largest and most influential organizations of African youth withdrew from the World Assembly of Youth, and in 1964, 17 Latin American organizations walked out of the assembly’s meeting in Amherst, Mass., condemning it for its fear of opposing US imperialist policies and accusing it of political unscrupulousness and disregard for the interests of national organizations. In 1962, the delegations of 27 countries of Western Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa walked out of the International Student Conference in Quebec. In the mid-1960’s, socialist youth organizations from France, Italy, and Japan withdrew from the International Union of Socialist Youth.

The political prestige of the World Assembly of Youth, the International Student Conference, and the International Union of Socialist Youth declined even more rapidly after 1967, when the American magazine Ramparts published a well-documented expose of links between the leaders of these associations and the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). In 1969, the International Student Conference was dissolved. The Council of European National Youth Committees, which had been founded in March 1963 as a European section of the World Assembly of Youth, broke away from that organization. At the 1971 congress of the International Union of Socialist Youth in London, many of its member organizations demanded a radical restructuring of its activity and a change in its traditional anticommunist line.

In the 1960’s, the Chinese leadership adopted a policy of splitting the democratic youth movement. With the beginning of the “cultural revolution,” the representatives of Chinese youth ceased to participate in the meetings of democratic youth and in the work of the WFDY and the IUS.

The second half of the 1960’s and the beginning of the 1970’s were marked by an upsurge in the democratic youth and student movement in the majority of capitalist countries. In 1968, political actions by young people took place in 50 countries of the capitalist world, and in 1971, in 70 countries. The strengthening of the public activity of youth is associated with the particularly cruel exploitation and discrimination (especially in wages) to which young people have been subjected in the capitalist countries, with difficulties in obtaining professional training, with mass unemployment, and with infringements of political rights. One of the reasons for the increasing importance of the actions of youth in public life is the absolute and relative increase in the number of young people and in their role in social production. Young men and women make up one-third of the independent population of most countries. In the developed capitalist countries, the number of students has risen sharply. In 1970 there were two to three times as many students as in 1960. (In the USA the increase was as high as 7.5 million, and in France, more than 600,000.) These increases are partly a result of the overall increase in the number of young people, but the primary reason for them is the scientific and technological revolution. Owing to the entrance of broader strata of the population into higher educational institutions, a relative democratization of the student social structure is taking place, primarily through the enrollment of representatives of the middle urban strata, the petite bourgeoisie, the intelligentsia, the civil servants, and, to some extent, the workers. No longer part of the social elite and no longer guaranteed highly paid jobs after graduation, students are opposing the class, antidemocratic system of education and the conversion of the universities into an appendage of the military-industrial complex. They aspire to active roles in public and political life.

Progressive young people in the capitalist countries are fighting more actively against the omnipotence of the monopo-lies and for the expansion of democratic rights and the improvement of the socioeconomic status of the working people. In 1968–69, the citadels of the capitalist world were shaken by the vigorous actions of students and young people. Students and young people were an important factor in the growth of the mass movement in May-June 1968 in France, despite the adventuristic actions of certain “left-wing” extremist leaders. Student actions broke out in West Berlin, the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), Italy, Japan, and Spain. In the USA, where hundreds of thousands of young men and women participated in antiwar demonstrations, the movement against American aggression in Vietnam became very broad. Young people in Latin America struggled against US economic and political expansion, colonialism, and neocolonialism and for civil rights, the Cuban Revolution, and social transformations. In the developing countries of Asia and Africa, progressive young people are contributing to economic development and the strengthening of the political independence of their countries. They are participating in the struggles of the colonial peoples for national independence.

All apects of the youth movement reflect the political struggle that is taking place throughout the world. A few small strata of youth are joining extreme right-wing, ultrareactionary organizations of the fascist variety (for example, in the USA, the Young Americans for Freedom, founded in 1960; in the FRG, the Young National Democrats and the National Democratic Students’ Union; and in Italy, the National Forces of the Right, a youth group of students and working people that was founded in 1949 and belongs to the Italian Social Movement, a neofascist party).

The actions of student youth in the late 1960’s, which were of unprecedented scope, demonstrated the enormous growth of the political activism and political radicalism of students and the increasing awareness of the connection between the system of higher education and the prevailing social relations. At the same time, the student struggle during these years reflected the weaknesses characteristic of certain sectors of the student movement in its formative period: political inexperience, petit bourgeois revolutionary attitudes, the tendency of some students to evaluate particular currents or leaders of the movement not on the basis of their activity but in terms of the more or less striking forms of their rebelliousness, and the inability of some student activists to conduct protracted, day-to-day revolutionary work.

The political immaturity of some of the student youth has been exploited by Trotskyite, Maoist, and anarchistic “revolutionaries of the phrase,” who have endeavored to gain influence over the students. Moreover, bourgeois and petit bourgeois philosophers and sociologists, such as H. Marcuse, J. Rowntree, and M. Rowntree, count on support from young people. Declaring that the working class is losing its revolutionary character, they flatter youth, calling it the decisive revolutionary force and the vanguard of the toiling masses. The Communist and workers’ parties oppose elements that are hostile to the genuine interests of youth—elements that encourage youth to take irresponsible actions, which, as a rule, have tragic consequences. At all times the Communist and workers’ parties point out that the most important condition for the successful development of the youth movement is its connection with the organized struggle of the workers.

The growth of the youth movement has facilitated the deepening of political differentiation and the weakening of the influence of openly conservative and right-wing forces among youth. It has promoted a shift to the left in the attitudes of regular members and in the official position of various bourgeois liberal and Christian youth organizations, including the German Young Democrats of the FRG (founded in 1947), the National Union of Young Liberals of Great Britain (1902), and national unions of students in Great Britain, Sweden, and Denmark. A similar shift to the left has been observed in the US National Student Association (founded in 1947), the Youth Movement of the Christian Democratic Party of Italy (1943), the Christian Democratic youth organizations of the Latin American countries, and European associations of Catholic working-class youth.

Anti-imperialist and anticapitalist tendencies have become stronger among socialist youth and its influential organizations (for example, in Great Britain, the Young Socialists, a group, founded in 1965, associated with the Labour Party; in the FRG, the Young Socialists, founded in 1920, and the Falcons, founded in 1904; and in Italy, the Italian Socialist Youth Federation, founded in 1966).

In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s, the influence of communist youth leagues and other democratic youth organizations grew stronger and broader in a number of countries. New Marxist youth organizations were established and became active (for example, in the USA, the Union of Young Workers for Liberation, founded in 1969; in the FRG, the German Socialist Working Youth [1968] and the Association of Marxist Students, also known as Spartacus [1969]; the Communist Youth Union of Canada [1970]; and the Communist Youth of Austria [1970]). Progressive young people support the programmatic documents and activity of these organizations. For example, in France young people supported the Youth Accuses Capitalism movement organized by the Movement of Communist Youth of France, as well as the program for the democratization of education sponsored by the Communist Party. In the FRG, they supported the Monopolies on Trial campaign initiated by the German Socialist Working Youth. The struggle for free professional training of young workers, which was initiated by the Communist Youth League in Great Britain, was supported by young people, as were the actions of the Italian Communist Youth Federation in defense of the rights of apprentices and journeymen. As the summary document of the international Conference of Communist and Workers’ Parties of 1969 points out, “Communists value highly the growth of the youth movement and actively participate in it. They spread in its ranks the ideas of scientific socialism. They explain the danger of various types of pseudorevolutionary ideas that may influence youth. They endeavor to help youth find the proper path in the struggle against imperialism and in defense of its own interests. Only close ties with the working-class movement and its communist vanguard can open before youth a truly revolutionary perspective”(Mezhdunarodnoe Soveshchanie kommunisticheskikh i rabochikh partii: Dokumenty i materialy, Moscow, 1969, p. 309).

The tendency toward detente between states with different socioeconomic systems, which emerged in the early 1970’s, has created favorable opportunities for the interaction of various political forces in the youth movement. Many organizations belonging to the International Union of Socialist Youth have favored the establishment of working contacts with youth organizations of a communist orientation. Cooperation is developing between the WFDY and the International Union of Young Christian Democrats, the International Union of Socialist Youth, the Council of European National Youth Committees, and the World Federation of Liberal and Radical Youth. The IUS is pursuing joint measures with the World Student Christian Federation and the International Student Movement for the UN (an independent organization since 1954). Expansion of contacts among young socialists, Christian Democrats, liberals, and young people of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries is planned.

Examples of positive cooperation among young people of different political and ideological persuasions include youth conferences on problems of European security and cooperation; the World Meeting of Youth and Students “For the Victory of the Vietnamese People—Freedom, Independence, and Peace” (Helsinki, 1969); and the World Meeting of Working Youth (Moscow, 1972). Many youth organizations participated in the Assemblies of Social Forces for Security and Cooperation in Europe (Belgium, 1972 and 1975) and the World Congress of Peace-Loving Forces (Moscow, October 1973).

Youth and student organizations representing various cur-rents have met repeatedly to discuss problems confronting the young people of the world, including the cessation of American aggression in Indochina; the elimination of the consequences of Israeli aggression against the Arab states; support for the liberation struggle of the patriots of Angola, Mozambique, Guinea (Bissau), and South Africa; solidarity with the democratic forces of Greece, Spain, and Portugal; and the socioeconomic status of youth and students. The Eighth Assembly of the WFDY (Budapest, October-November 1970) approved the initiative of the All-Union Lenin Communist Youth League on conducting a worldwide campaign called Youth Unmasks Imperialism. Under this campaign, young men and women defended young democrats subjected to persecution and rendered various forms of assistance to young people in countries fighting to win and strengthen national independence. A wide range of issues was discussed at the Tenth World Festival of Youth and Students (Berlin, July 28 to Aug. 5, 1973), in which 25,000 young men and women from 140 countries participated.

The distinctive characteristics of the world youth movement of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s are a strengthening of progressive tendencies and a striving for contacts and cooperation among youth of different political persuasions who are opposed to reaction and imperialist aggression.


Lenin, V. I. O molodezhi. Moscow, 1969.
”Zadachi bor’by protiv imperializma na sovremennom etape i edinstvo deistvii kommunisticheskikh i rabochikh partii, vsekh antiimperialisticheskikh sil.”Mezhdunarodnoe Soveshchanie kommunisticheskikh i rabochikh partii: Dokumenty i materialy. Moscow, 1969.
Brezhnev, L. I. Molodymstrait* kommunizm. Moscow, 1970.
Reshetov, P. I. Puti i sud’by molodezhi Zapada. Moscow, 1967.
Lomeiko, V. B. Lenin i molodezh’ Moscow, 1969.
Moshniaga, V. P. Molodoe pokolenie internatsionalistov. Moscow, 1972.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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