Palgrave Macmillan, 2015. Paperback 2017.

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Transnational Histories of Youth in the Twentieth Century examines the emergence of youth and young people as a central historical force in the global history of the twentieth century. Each of the chapters considers the activities of young people from a transnational perspective, emphasizing their agency in the development of global interconnectedness by focusing on a variety of case studies that emphasize topics and regions that too often remain unconsidered.

From backpacking in Europe to political activism in Africa, from Malaysian scouting for girls to Franco-Maghribi music, from Argentine Zionism to the Chinese revolution, the local practices and behaviors of the young engaged with the world. This collection is unique in that it analyzes not only the effect of transnationality on youth but also how youth shaped transnationality.

It reveals the activities, mobilities, and identities of the young to be a central component of globalization.


“Mixing two innovative fields of research does not automatically ensure good scholarship. Yet in the case of Transnational Histories of Youth in the Twentieth Century, a collection of essays edited by Richard Ivan Jobs and David M. Pomfret, the result commands admiration. Jobs and Pomfret have teamed up with ten authors from eight countries to investigate how youth—both as a gendered concept and as a social formation—emerged as an engine of twentieth-century processes of globalization. Not wedded to Eurocentric narratives or Western perspectives, the essays unfold a dynamic and complex panorama of a variety of transnational circuits and their impact on young people’s lives and relationships while also stressing youth’s agency in different forums of crossborder socialization.”

--Mischa Honeck, Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth

“The global reach of this excellent volume – from China to the Middle East, Japan to South America – is well served by well researched, well argued, and well written chapters on youth, transnationalism, mobility, and modernity.  The volume has an excellent introduction and many compelling and original chapters. Some chapters are truly outstanding, many are very, very good . . . The volume will be of interest to scholars, graduate students, and advanced undergraduates.”

--Anne Gorsuch, University of British Columbia

"offer[s] substantial insight into how young people variously functioned as emblems and agents of modernity, reconstruction, national identity, mobility and hybridity.”
Modern and Contemporary France

"Transnational Histories of Youth in the Twentieth Century considers implements of modernity and processes of transnational globalization . . . decolonization, neoliberalism, and racial repression, all of which variously encouraged the forging of generationally based solidarities that traversed nation, colony, and empire.”

Journal of African History