In this paper I am particularly interested in the discursive dimension and historical implications of the new sexual selves as expressed in the public space in a form of TV-show. I show that articulation of the sexual self as a choice that is relatively free from political and material constraints was an important dimension of the public presentation of sexuality. How big were the changes in the media discourse on sex and the sexual self in Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union? Thus study of the processes that took place in the s can help us to better understand the character of these shifts and the controversies surrounding them. In particular, I will show that articulation of the sexual self as a choice that is relatively free from political and material constraints was an important dimension of the public presentation of sexuality. I suggest that it was one of the reasons why conservative reversals could be realized so easily.
Recently in Russia, abortion rights have been attacked. For decades, Russian women could have an elective abortion up to week 12 of pregnancy; between 12 and 22 weeks, medical or social grounds were required for an abortion. However, this right has been slowly but steadily undermined. The forces behind this trend are actively seeking to dramatically change current legislation.
Personal is Not Political? The Sexual Self in Russian Talk Shows of the 1990s
Tatiana Golikova, deputy prime minister for social policy, recently spoke out in favor of informing teenagers about methods of contraception—an unexpected move, given the conservative trend of recent years. Image cedit: Kremlin. In the post-Soviet decades, the emergence of a market economy, the availability of modern contraceptive methods, and increased knowledge about contraception have all contributed to improving sexual culture. The number of abortions has decreased significantly and would have declined even more rapidly were it not for certain issues, among them the absence of a system of sex education. Victoria Sakevich , a Russian demographer, discusses the abortion dynamic in Russia in recent decades in an interview with Maria Lipman , comparing it with abortion rates in other countries.