New Lithuania in Old Hands: Effects and Outcomes of Europeanization in Rural Lithuania
Based on detailed ethnographic material, 'New Lithuania in Old Hands' analyzes the impact that European Union membership has had upon the country's ageing small-scale farmers. Addressing the highly relevant themes of European Union enlargement and the 'Return to Europe', this book describes how Lithuania's EU membership has been a far cry from the scenarios of wealth and overabundance once promised.
On the contrary, membership of the EU has in many instances resulted in a return to subsistence production, increased insecurity and a reinforcement of kinship obligations. Within the agrarian sector, such changes threaten to have a large impact upon the future of family structures, and in turn, the future of the farming demographic as a whole.
While political forces have attempted to create a 'New Lithuania' in light of Europe's geopolitical agenda, it has been the country's ageing 'Soviet generation' that has actually brought into effect the restructuring of the agricultural sector. Thus, instead of treating the European Union as an elite project and voicing the support of various other parts of the population, 'New Lithuania in Old Hands' shows how the broader parts of the rural population have been affected by and engaged in the processes of change that followed Lithuania's accession to the EU.
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