Russia may not be the first address when we think about global feminism. But nevertheless it should be very clear that many feminists live there. Often much more suppressed and in silence than here in Europe. When I think about Russia of course the pictures of old-fashioned, conservative men come in mind. Men who present their power with anger and macho behaviour. Men, who are keen on carrying on the tradition of disgraceful patriarchy. Things we often forget in our comfortable European feel-good-bubble.
But good news is: feminism doesn’t just belong to us. Of course there are people who would love to claim the term feminism for themselves. But in fact, and we all know that actually, feminism is something which is here for everyone – women and men, no matter which gender. And all of them should be part of it and, oh yes please, do something for it.
So with my little knowing about Russian feminism and the way women live over there I scroll through my Facebook and stumble upon a text of a Russian friend of mine. Oh my, I have Russian friends and never talked about feminism in Russia nowadays. How ignorant! But as we all seem so connected by all of theses social media stuff it seems like all of us live in the same basic requirements which is by far just not true.
The friend I’m talking about is an English teacher and she shared this wonderful thought from one of her students with us.
„What about gender equality in the world? On our planet it is one of the most hot-debated topics ever. What does it really mean? Do women have the same rights as men? All around the world women are treated like they don’t have any rights at all. People think that politics, hard work, business, higher education are not for a woman. It is an absurd! In our history we had great women who made our country great. Women can be inventors, mathematicians, poetesses and take all other great occupations. More and more women go to politics to protect their rights. There are more women that are building careers than those who become housewives.
There are so many stereotypes about women, for example, we are a weak gender, we must become housewives and mothers, politic sphere is not for us. But right now it’s the 21st century and women make history everyday! We are not weak, we are strong!“
Arina Ivashkina, 17y/o, Moscow/Russia
Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Anastasia and Arina. Proud sisterlove goes out to Russia today.