Yet, in modern day Russia, a fairly low number of women serve in the military, despite an expanded force structure approaching one million active duty personnel. Why is this the case? In this piece, I argue that traditional gender roles that emphasize reproduction and high-level doubts about female competency are key factors limiting the role of women in the Russian Armed Forces. Though women have long served as volunteers in the Russian and formerly, Soviet military, females were officially permitted to enlist on contract in November by presidential decree. In May , Minister of Defense Shoygu stated that there were approximately 41, women enlisted in the Russian Armed Forces, which constitutes roughly 4. Though this is a slight reduction compared to the totals in 44, , a total of around 35, to 45, has been fairly consistent for Russia over the past 10 years.
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Russian Women Are Ready to Reclaim Once-Forbidden Jobs
Reviewing the Changing Situation of Women in Russian Society
Women in Russian society have a rich and varied history during numerous regimes throughout the centuries. It is important to note that since Russia is a multicultural society, the experiences of women in Russia vary significantly across ethnic, religious, and social lines. The life of an ethnic Russian woman can be dramatically different from the life of other minority women like Bashkir , Chechen , or Yakuts Sakha woman; just as the life of a woman from a lower-class rural family can be different from the life of a woman from an upper-middle-class urban family. Nevertheless, a common historical and political context provides a room for speaking about women in Russia in general.
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Center for Strategic & International Studies
Yevgenia Markova dreamed of being a truck driver all her life. There was just one problem — working as one would have been against the law. For decades, women in Russia have been banned from being employed in different jobs.
One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman. Throughout history, the role of women in society has repeatedly varied according to political conditions and discourse, for the purpose of serving the interests of those in power. Contemporary Russia is hardly an exception to this general tendency.