In this book, leading western specialists and Russian and Ukrainian feminists examine how gender has shaped Russian and Ukrainian history from the twelfth century to the present. In particular, they analyse the current backlash against women’s emancipation. Using new archival materials and the insights of feminist theory, the contributors explore the relevance of gender equality and difference in Russian history. They find that women have not merely submitted to the patriarchal system, but instead have found creative ways of resisting it. Chapters focusing on contemporary Russia discuss abortion, pornography, sexual minorities, young women’s lifestyles, the impact of economic reform on women and the development of the women’s movement. This book will be of interest to students and specialists in Russian, Ukrainian and women’s studies, as well as to historians, political scientists, sociologists and economists.