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Cultural Comparison of Russia

Essay by review  •  October 22, 2010  •  Essay  •  818 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,395 Views

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Gender roles in Russia have dramatically changed since the fall of the former Soviet Union and the fall of communism. It is hard to look directly at the constitution of Russia seeing as though the drafting and redrafting of their constitution is still underway. However, looking at the constitution of the former Soviet Union, you can see it is clearly stated that: "Women and men have equal rights." It is very clear that in the Soviet Union they were trying to make it so that women and men were equal. It is still clear today that those same basic ideals are present in Russia. Women are clearly more equal in their country than in ours. In the workforce as well as in the home, women play a more equal role than in the present day United States. However, for the sake of this paper, let us just look at the infrastructure of Russia, formerly known as the Soviet Union or USSR.

In terms of employment, the former Soviet Union had the largest percentage of women in the labor force than any other comparative society. This still remains the case in the present day Russia. Unemployed women in Russia will be quickly employed. They have a very high success rate of reemploying women if they were to lose their jobs. "Compared to Western women, although Russian women have a much higher representation in law, medicine and engineering as well as in the skilled trades, such as metalworking and construction, they are overrepresented in low-paying and menial jobs and under-represented in managerial jobs," (Lindsey 130). The fair treatment of women in the old USSR was a great advantage to women in the workforce. In fact, women were seen to have had the advantage when it came to getting jobs because the government helped them so much. However on the contrary, the new Russia is seen to be much like the United States. Russia has the largest quantity of women in the work force, however the inequality lies in that they are treated, monetarily, completely different. Money is paid in different amounts to men and women. Women are clearly paid less than men.

In the family life, men and women have role specialization just like in the US. Men are told to go out and make the money and the women are told to stay at home with the children and support their man. Women take on all of the domestic responsibilities and marriage is a high priority, especially for rural women. The dramatically decreasing birthrate has prompted authorities to actually promote the "woman as homemaker". While they do admit that women are needed in the workforce, labor officials state openly that they



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