New working class youth: identity problems


2018, Vol. 2. №4

New working class youth: identity problems

For citation: Gavriliuk V. V. 2018. “New working class youth: identity problems”. Siberian Socium, vol. 2, no 4, pp. 30-41. DOI: 10.21684/2587-8484-2018-2-4-30-41

About the author:

Vera V. Gavriliuk, Dr. Sci. (Soc.), Professor, Department of Marketing and Municipal Management, Industrial University of Tyumen (Tyumen, Russian Federation); ORCID: 0000-0002-0131-4939;


The actualization of working-class studies in Russia can be explained by the dynamics of the social structure of the post-Soviet society. The analysis of class and stratification approaches has shown that a new working class has become the main element of the social structure of the contemporary Russian society. This article studies and defines the new working class in its difference from the traditional proletariat and other types of hired workers. The author studies the youth’s professional identity, showing its instability and controversy, and its class-consciousness. That, in turn, speaks of the instability of the whole class identity and unformed class-consciousness. Contemporary working class shows no signs of the previous proletariat, but it is a new wide social class, which is still forming under social differentiation of new owners and hired workers in the economy and service sector. As already mentioned, the social position of the new Russian working class is fundamentally different from the status of the Soviet proletariat. Back then, the working class was the “leading social force”, the source of all progressive social transformations, and even the criterion of public morality. Nowadays, it has become an actual social group of employees, subjected to all forms of exploitation and alienation, and has the right to fight with the employers for the improvement of their working conditions. This article relies on the empirical data of the study conducted in April-June 2018 in the Ural Federal District. Its results show that the young people do not show sufficient and stable signs of solidarity and identity, which were inherent to their predecessors.


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