chapter  8
17 Pages

The politics of private life: The evolution and transformation of the Soviet Family Code

The October Revolution of 1917 brought many political and social changes to Russian society, and among them was the new attitude to the institution of family. The banner under which the newly formed Soviet government promoted various reforms was women’s liberation from “kitchen slavery” and full equally with men, including equality in the domestic sphere. The goals of the new government were indeed grandiose: to take control of marriage and family life away from the Church, which previously registered births, marriages, and deaths and exercised a degree of indirect control over all aspects of family life; to simplify marriage and divorce procedures; to liberate women from domestic chores and childcare; and give equal rights and opportunities to all children regardless of their legitimacy.