The Baltic Region

2022 Vol. 14 №3

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Lifestyles of Kaliningrad youth



Based on an analysis of leisure and consumer practices of students of two leading Kaliningrad universities, this paper attempts to reconstruct the actual space of Kaliningrad youth lifestyles, as well as to identify and describe groups following these lifestyles in socio-­economic and demographic terms. Five style groups are identified: the party people who prefer to spend their free time in bars and clubs; the hipsters who frequent theatres and lecture halls, whilst being staunch upholders of the consumerist culture promoted via social media; the ‘normal’ young people choosing physical exercise and standard weekend leisure activities; the young adults combining Soviet leisure heritage with creative and do-it-yourself practices; the homebodies opting for stay-at-home entertainment. Drawing on the discussion about the significance of lifestyle for modern society, the author concludes that lifestyles do not replace the usual socio-­economic stratification markers, and their capacity to differentiate youth groups with unequal access to economic and cultural resources of youth is also limited. Youth leisure lifestyles form an independent system of stratification, which partially coincides with existing social boundaries and partially overlaps with them. The main dividing line runs between the young people who can afford to choose from a ‘supermarket of styles’ and those deprived of such an opportunity.


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