No More Heroines?: Russia, Women and the Market (Women and by Sue Bridger, Rebecca Kay, Kathryn Pinnick

By Sue Bridger, Rebecca Kay, Kathryn Pinnick

With the cave in of Soviet rule and the emergence of self reliant Russia, identical to Russian ladies within the Western mind's eye has replaced dramatically. The strong tractor drivers and athletes were changed via glamorous yet susceptible attractiveness queens or the saggy and downcast ladies buying and selling items at the streets.The authors of this paintings take a more in-depth examine what lies in the back of the above photos and the way Russian girls are dealing with a truly various type of lifestyles. the focus is at the influence of unemployment on Russian ladies and the way they're dealing with it.Based on case experiences and private interviews conducted within the Moscow area in 1993-94, not more Heroines? will offer either professional and non-specialist alike with entry to the contemplating ladies and their companies in Russia this present day.

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Extra info for No More Heroines?: Russia, Women and the Market (Women and Politics)

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Their work identified a range of characteristics which were deemed to be ‘natural’ to the two sexes: strength, activity, bravery, inventive and investigative behaviour, for example, were masculine traits, while weakness, emotionalism, intuition and nurturant qualities were feminine. From this basis, these writers went on to urge that the upbringing of girls and boys should deliberately seek to emphasise these ‘natural’ differences. 2 In 1984, a course entitled ‘The Ethics and Psychology of Family Life’, based firmly on work of this type, was introduced into the final years of the Soviet secondary school curriculum and effectively marked the culmination of the demographic policy instigated under Leonid Brezhnev.

What hope, then, for a new discourse of empowerment for women when the very vocabulary of change was proving absolutely unusable? The immediate answer was that the prospects were far from good. As the linguist, Galina Iakusheva, observed, the prevailing discourse was aiming at precisely the opposite. By 1990, the manifestos of parliamentary candidates tacitly or even quite openly embraced the following logic: ‘Make women sit at home with their children for about three years. That will make them financially dependent on their husbands and it will make the husbands more responsible.

These same provisions are, however, taken very seriously by those aiming to justify women’s exclusion from the workforce both in terms of improving production and of benefiting society as a whole, by increasing women’s involvement in family life. The idea that women are a nuisance as employees is one which has been carefully cultivated 46 THE IMPACT OF CHANGE in order to support their permanent removal from paid employment. As one female journalist writing for the loosely feminist newspaper Delovaia zhenshchina (Business Woman) caustically observed, ‘it is obvious that an employer will strive, using every available means to be rid of such a capricious and frail worker’ (Kononova 1992:6).

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