32 / 2010
Urška Strle

Childhood in Exile

Slovenian historiography has to a large degree ignored children and childhood. This disregard seems unjustified, since the lives of young people offer us valuable and often alternative insights into various periods of Slovenian history. The author synthesizes the phenomenon of the wartime exile of Slovenes to neighbouring countries and illustrates it using children’s experiences. Research of children’s experiences of war and exile reflects both the dynamics of wartime migration and the consequences in the Slovenian cultural area. The paper on children’s experiences of exile is placed in the socio-historical context of the Second World War. In terms of methodology it uses a combination of classical historical methodology and oral history; it is based on the relevant historical literature, an analysis of historical materials from throughout the entire post-war era, and various oral testimonies obtained from people in their later years.
KEYWORDS: childhood, exiles, Second World War, testimony, memoirs