As the Soviet communist regime gave way to democracy, the emergence of an entirely new political and social landscape had the potential to turn Russian society upside down. In Mothers and Soldiers: Organizing Men and Women in 1990s Russia, Amy Caiazza looks at the effects of this seismic change on gender roles, and specifically the role of women in a newly democratic Russia. By observing through a gendered lens institutions like the military, and the process of making public policy, Caiazza finds that despite the institutional disruption, the pattern of gender role ideologies maintained continuity from the former times while at the same time embracing aspects of Western feminism.
"Mothers and Soldiers offers a complex and nuanced examination of the gender ideologies that have dominated the values and politics of transitional Russia. Focusing on the gendered practices of citizenship in Russia, as shaped through motherhood, military service, and feminist organizing, Caiazza bridges the chasm between theoretical formulations of democracy and the actual lived experiences of democratizing and marketing societies. She is adept at giving her readers a tantalizing lens through which to understand women's status, the struggle for equity, and the politics of social change in post-socialist societies.-Jean C. Robinson, Associate Professor of Political Science and Dean for Women's Affairs, Indiana University."