Social differentiation, poverty and the emergence of the newly rich occasioned by the collapse of the Soviet Union have seldom been analysed from a class perspective. "Rethinking Class in Russia" addresses this absence by exploring the manner in which class positions are constructed and negotiated in the new Russia. Bringing an ethnographic and cultural studies approach to the topic, this book demonstrates that class is a central axis along which power and inequality are organized in Russia, revealing how symbolic, cultural and emotional dimensions are deeply intertwined with economic and material inequalities. Thematically arranged and presenting the latest empirical research, this interdisciplinary volume brings together work from both Western and Russian scholars on a range of spheres and practices, including popular culture, politics, social policy, consumption, education, work, family and everyday life. By engaging with discussions in new class analysis and by highlighting how the logic of global neoliberal capitalism is appropriated and negotiated vis-a-vis the Soviet hierarchies of value and worth, this book offers a multifaceted and carefully contextualized picture of class relations and identities in contemporary Russia and makes a contribution to the theorisation of class and inequality in a post-Cold War era. As such it will appeal to those with interests in sociology, anthropology, geography, political science, gender studies, Russian and Eastern European studies, and media and cultural studies.
Several approaches to the concept of fatherhood present in Western sociological tradition are analyzed and compared: biological determinism, social constructivism and biosocial theory. The problematics of fatherhood and men’s parental practices is marginalized in modern Russian social research devoted to family and this fact makes the traditional inequality in family relations, when the father’s role is considered secondary compared to that of mother, even stronger. However, in Western critical men’s studies several stages can be outlined: the development of “sex roles” paradigm (biological determinism), the emergence of the hegemonic masculinity concept, inter-disciplinary stage (biosocial theory). According to the approach of biological determinism, the role of a father is that of the patriarch, he continues the family line and serves as a model for his ascendants. Social constructivism looks into man’s functions in the family from the point of view of masculine pressure and establishing hegemony over a woman and children. Biosocial theory aims to unite the biological determinacy of fatherhood with social, cultural and personal context. It is shown that these approaches are directly connected with the level of the society development, marriage and family perceptions, the level of egality of gender order.