Collage with three repeated vintage photos of the Statue of Liberty’s torch
Collage with three repeated vintage photos of the Statue of Liberty’s torch

I was born in the USSR, a country that claimed to have pioneered gender equality. After the Revolution of 1917, Russian women gained suffrage without as much as lifting a finger, and were soon granted the rights to abortion, divorce, free childcare, revealing dress, and executive leadership. I’ve read that in 1945, after 20 million Russian men got slaughtered in WWII and 2 million more were taken to the GULAG camps, it was mostly women who took up the mantle and kept the country going.

It may have happened, I don’t know for sure. But the provincial Russia I grew up in was a discouragingly, deeply misogynistic place. “You can’t trust women,” I heard frequently as a girl. “It’s not a coincidence there have never been any prominent female artists or scientists,” some concluded. …

About

Irina Koryagina

Irina Koryagina is a graphic designer and typographer based in New York City.

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