Review by Choice Review
Some of the economic, cultural, and social catastrophes that followed the collapse of the Soviet Union have received considerable coverage; however, the worsening situation of women has rarely been studied. In these essays, Russian women scholars (most of them researchers at the Moscow Centre for Gender Studies) address the increasing gender segregation of the labor force, legal discrimination against women, violent pornography and other forms of misogyny in the post-Soviet press, myths concerning women's status in Soviet and post-Soviet society, the lesbian culture, and prospects for women's movements. Like most collections, this one is uneven and occasionally repetitious. Moreover, some of the writers are distressingly idealistic about the state of women's rights movements in the West, and ignorant about many aspects of their own country's rich feminist traditions (especially in the period 1865-1936). The best essays, however, are impressive both for the sophistication of their theoretical framework and for their wealth of detail; those by Klimenkova, Khotkina, and Lipovskaya are particularly powerful. Clark's translation is skillful, nuanced, at times even elegant. Of interest to Slavicists, economists, political scientists, historians, and women's studies specialists; required reading in courses on present-day Russia. All levels.
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.