True Lithuania

Society of Lithuania: Introduction

Lithuania is a cohesive society of 3 million people with no serious internal conflicts. The local Baltic culture has been influenced by both the West and the East.

Lithuanians are quite introverted and speak little to people they don't know. The nuclear family is the most important (further relatives and childhood friends may be far away due to migration). Own home is a kind of shrine for a Lithuanian, both as a secure location and for self-expression. Modern fashions are largely inspired by the West but the restrictive Soviet past (and the post-Soviet freedom) left its marks. Lithuanian virtues, ethics, and morale includes Christian, Soviet and Western influences. The same can be said about etiquette as well; Lithuanians plan their time in advance and are relatively cold tempered, but both are not the extremes.

The importance of social classes is negligible and there are few districts or institutions exclusively for "the rich" or "the poor"; save for a few extreme cases they intermingle. However, the age-related expectations for a person to fulfill some roles tend to be more stringent than in the West, coinciding with a great generational divide.

Once *the* definition of a person, religion lost some of its importance under the Soviet atheist regime. Roman Catholic (~85,9%) practices and holidays are generally considered mainstream, while Russian Orthodox (~4,6%) is the most visible minority. Interfaith relations are cordial; religious (93,2%) vs. irreligious (6,8%) may pose a bigger divide.

Religion has been replaced by ethno-linguistic groups as the most prominent self-identification even before the Soviet occupation. Lithuanians are the majority (85%). Prime minorities are the conservative Poles (6,65%) and mostly urban Russians/Russophones (8%).

Click to learn more about Lithuania: History&Today, Society 9 Comments
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  1. what Lithuanian make of migrants?

  2. Hello, I live in California, USA. I would like to know more about Lithuania. Please send me more information about your country.

    Sincerely,

    Arthur

    Tel:(951) 756-8052

  3. Thanks for sharing the material. Very informative and useful

  4. Nice material, also some more interesting stuff about Lithuania http://confiduss.com/en/jurisdictions/lithuania/demographics/

  5. hello.
    I may have many questions, as i begin researching my family ancestry. firstly, i have documents stating my grandfather was from ‘Rosolickki’ but for the life of me, cannot find it anywhere, on maps. (born 1881) I have a pretty good trail from his arrival to the US, and then till his passing, but now I find it difficult to trace back to his origins and my other ancestors.
    Can you recommend the best (in your opinion) reading materials dealing the WWII timelines regarding Lithuania?
    This is a good start. thanks in advance for any assistance.

    • Hello, since original post I have found the name to be ‘Rasaliskiai’. Good news!
      Do you know, is that a village, town, or ? I have not found it in a list of actual cities so I think it is much more rural.
      Thanks again.

      DW

      • It is a village of 28 people, although it used to be larger, with a population of over 100. It is just 2 km from Želva town, however, so may be considered a part of it. Želva has a population of 457.

    • We have these articles:
      World War 2 in Lithuania” is a good introduction. Also read “First Independent Republic of Lithuania (1918-1940)” and “Soviet Occupation of Lithuania (1944-1990)” to know about the events before and after.

      Also, check the extensive article on the History of ethnic relations in Lithuania, especially its World War 2 sections. This article explains in a more extensive way on why these events are often interpreted so differently by different ethnicities, and how the relations between different ethnic groups of Lithuania and its neighbors (i.e. Lithuanians, Poles, Russians, Jews, Germans) developed during the World War 2.

      Unfortunately, much of the English materials available on World War 2 in Lithuania is biased and written from just a single of the “ethnic standpoints”, e.g. Jewish or Russian. Such materials nearly always on the victims of a single ethnicity (or injustices suffered by that ethnicity), only briefly mentioning the others (and nearly avoiding the injustices perpetrated by the people of the ethnicity in question).

      Before reading any of that, one needs to understand the existence and reasons of all the standpoints and understand how each group of Lithuania was affected by the war and the related Soviet and Nazi German genocides. This is where our article on the History of the ethnic relations in Lithuania helps.


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