Demobilization, Trauma and Postwar Readjustment in Late Stalinist Leningrad
In the summer of 1945 millions of demobilized Red Army soldiers began returning home after four long years of industrialized warfare. In the next three years over 300.000 veterans would return to Leningrad, a war-ravaged city with a particularly traumatic wartime experience. This paper explores an extreme case of the difficulties of demobilization, and the challenges of adapting to civilian life experienced by returning veterans. Despite the disorientating and destabilizing process of adjusting to peace, Leningrad’s veterans proved remarkably adaptable and resilient in the face of the many obstacles put in their way.