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Young Left (Sweden)

Young Left
Ung Vänster
Chairperson Hanna Cederin
Secretary General Hanna Cederin
Founded 1903/1970
Headquarters Kungsgatan 84, Stockholm
Ideology Feminism[1]
Mother party Left Party
International affiliation None; former member of the YCI, WFDY and ENDYL

Young Left (Swedish: Ung Vänster) is the youth organization of the Swedish Left Party.


Young Left is a political youth organization committed to organising young people to work for social change that evolved out of the labour movement, with influences from environmentalism, the peace movement and the feminist movement. Young Left works for social justice and a society characterized by equality, secularism, generous welfare provisions for all citizens, generous immigration policies and respect for the environment. As its mother party the Left Party as well as the Social Democratic Party, Young Left is a strong supporter of the Swedish labour unions and the Swedish model with conditions of work such as wages being regulated in branch-level collective agreements between the unions and the employers rather than on individual basis. Ung Vänster has had various names and political alignments over the years but is continuously characterized by the issues that have been at the centre of its history, such as antifascism, social justice, equality and internationalism.[3][non-primary source needed] During the past years, the main focus of the organization has been the struggle against growing xenophobia in Sweden (as witnessed by the electoral success of the Sweden Democrats during the national elections of 2010) and criticism of the current center-right government and in particular on its privatizations of welfare services and priorities of tax reductions rather than increased public spending on welfare and investments in infrastructure and renewable energy.[citation needed]


Young Left work together with and support the Left Party and Vänsterns Studentförbund, but makes on the basis of its own analyses independent decisions regarding organizational and political issues.


First congress of SDUF, in 1905

Young Left was founded in 1903 as Socialdemokratiska Ungdomsförbundet (SDUF, Social Democratic Youth League). However, the youth league has clearly attached itself to the left-wing within the Social Democratic Party. At the outbreak of the First World War, the tensions within the party aggravated. In May 1917, the youth league together with the left-wing faction within the party took the initiative to form a new party, Sverges socialdemokratiska vänsterparti (Social Democratic Left Party of Sweden). SDUF became the youth wing of the new party. SSV joined the Communist International in 1919 and was renamed to Sveriges kommunistiska parti (Communist Party of Sweden). Following that, SDUF was renamed to Sveriges Kommunistiska Ungdomförbund (Young Communist League of Sweden) and became the Swedish section of the Communist Youth International.

In 1952, Democratic Youth was founded on the initiative of the party, in order to be a broader youth movement. Until 1958, SKU and DU existed as parallel organizations. In 1958, the two organizations merged and took the name DU.

In 1967, ultra-left elements took over the organization and broke away to form Marxist-leninistiska kampförbundet (Marxist-Leninist Struggle League). Reconstruction work started rapidly. In 1970, the organization was re-baptized as Kommunistisk Ungdom (Communist Youth). By 1973, there was a national organization in function and, by 1975, an ordinary congress was held.

Young Left have published the youth magazine Röd Press since 1982, when Young Left lost the rights of its magazine Stormklockan to the Maoist MLK in a trial.

In Sweden, Young Left was one of the many forces behind the large February 15, 2003 anti-war protest.


Name changes

  • 1903 Socialdemokratiska Ungdomsförbund (SDUF, Social Democratic Youth League)
  • 1921 Sveriges Kommunistiska Ungdomsförbund (SKU, Young Communist League of Sweden)
  • 1958 Demokratisk Ungdom (DU, Democratic Youth)
  • 1967 Vänsterns Ungdomsförbund (VUF, Youth League of the Left)
  • 1970 Kommunistisk Ungdom (KU, Communist Youth)
  • 1991 Ung Vänster (Young Left)


External links