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The Youth of the Unified Nation: Social Control and Discipline in Romanian Interwar High Schools (2018-2019)

Field of study: History

In post-1918 national states, cultural and educational policies were subordinated to the strengthening of the nations. Romania also implemented thorough cultural and educational reforms by extending the school network and by unifying the education systems in the new provinces. Youth became an important link in the state actions designed to transform the profile of Greater Romania from a
heterogeneous multi-ethnic state to a consolidated national entity. High school youth was assigned with strategic roles, as it represented the recruitment pool of the middle class, contributing to the formation of the bureaucracy, and even of the intellectual, political and economic elite. Thus, starting from the idea that the adolescent society was the future adult society, the state strived to prepare the
youth in the spirit of discipline and nationalism. This study analyzes high school youth and educational policies in interwar Romania, from the perspective of the power relation between school authorities and adolescents. By using a great amount of laws, regulations, and archives, the aim of this demarche is to show how discipline worked as an instrument connecting nation building process in a multiethnic state, educational policies and youth.

Keywords: secondary education, adolescents, interwar Romania, Straja Ţării, discipline

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