JiscMail Logo
Email discussion lists for the UK Education and Research communities

Help for EAST-WEST-RESEARCH Archives


EAST-WEST-RESEARCH Archives

EAST-WEST-RESEARCH Archives


EAST-WEST-RESEARCH@JISCMAIL.AC.UK


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

EAST-WEST-RESEARCH Home

EAST-WEST-RESEARCH Home

EAST-WEST-RESEARCH  March 2005

EAST-WEST-RESEARCH March 2005

Options

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password

Subject:

Review: Zhenshchiny na kraiu Evropy. Ed. Elena Gapova. Minsk, 2003 (Slavic Review)

From:

"Serguei Alex. Oushakine" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Serguei Alex. Oushakine

Date:

Wed, 9 Mar 2005 22:38:51 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (79 lines)

Slavic Review,
Volume 64 Number 1 Spring 2005

Zhenshchiny na kraiu Evropy. Ed. Elena Gapova. Minsk: Evropeiskii
Gumanotarnyi Universitet, 2003. 433pp. Notes. Illustrations. Plates. Hard
bound.

This collection of articles presents multifaceted look at the history and
culture of women in Belarus and Western Poland. Editor Elena Gapova
establishes the purpose of the collection as an exploration of women and
gender in the context of a multiethnic society, where national borders and
dominant political systems changed frequently. The territories of eastern
Poland, Lithuania, and Belarus were, to outsiders, borderlands, and
nationalist movements within these areas struggled to define themselves
through reflection on their relations with lands to the west, that is,
Europe, or lands to the east, specifically Russia. Organized by time period
and by theme, the collection includes such topics as images of women
warriors in Polish-Lithuanian confederation, women in World War II partisan
movements, and women's images in songs. As often happens in collections that
aspire description of a multiethnic society, each article focuses on women
of one ethnic or national group, whether Belarusian, Polish, Jewish, or (in
one article each) , Tatar and Gypsy, while discussion of comparison or
interaction is found only in a few pieces. Most of the articles are
original, but several are translations from English work published
elsewhere.

Elena Gapova's article on the women's and national questions in interwar
Belarus stands out as an excellent synthesis of western gender theory and
reflection on Soviet gender ideas. She compares the Soviet project of women'
s liberation in eastern Belarus with nationalist approaches to women's to
women's equality among Belarusians in eastern Poland and Lithuania,
concluding that in both cases, women's projects were placed within a larger,
male social project, either building socialism or building the nation.
In a work focused on the sixteenth-century Kingdom of Lithuania, Galina
Derbina uses legal codes and documents from court cases reflecting the
experiences of aristocratic women to show the significance of changes from
customary to either canon or secular law in shaping marriage, divorce, and
inheritance. She suggests that the new formal codes of law, enforced by
church or state, made divorce easier for Orthodox women but almost
impossible for Roman Catholics. Authors for all articles concerning
pre-twentieth-century issues complain about a lack of sources and rely
heavily on the archives of the Radziwill estate.

Several articles focus on cultural artifacts and symbols. Rozaliia
Alexandrovich explores Tatar-Muslim identity in Belarus through personal
attachment to an artistic rendering of a selection from the Qur'an (called a
mugir), a familiar cultural object in many Tatar homes, and through memories
of her grandmother's food, spirituality and worldview. Ol'ga Lobachevskaiia
discusses Belarusian women's weaving, examining its connection to life cycle
rituals and women's shared experiences, using a gendered approach to
aesthetics, and describing changes that have reduced this once widespread
production to a relatively rare pastime. A colored plate of a mugir, as well
as one of a painted rug, the subject of another article, in a collection of
women's artworks at the end of the book, gives the reader a visual
impression of these cultural objects; a plate showing a weaving would have
been a valuable addition.

There are quite a few articles about individuals, including those on the
playwright Frantishka Radziwill (by Ol'ga Bazhenova), and political actors
Esfir' Frumkina (by Rochelle Rutchild), and Poluta Bodunova (by Valentina
Lebedeva), all of which ask complex questions about identity and agency and
about seemingly feminist actions within larger political and social
frameworks.

As a whole, the volume is rich in its variety of subject material, and many
articles should prove valuable to researchers interested in women and gender
in eastern Europe. Article authors assume a basic acquaintance with the
region and provide no glossary of region-specific vocabulary, making some
sections difficult for the reader who does not have this background. The
introductory chapter, by Gapova, is oriented toward an audience that knows
the area; she seeks to introduce those readers to ideas about the
construction of gender and national identities. The lack of a concluding
chapter renders the collection less coherent than it could be. The book's
length does not begin to suggest its density. Published in almost annoyingly
fine print, it contains enough material for two volumes.

Marianne Kamp,
University of Wyoming

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

JiscMail Tools


RSS Feeds and Sharing


Advanced Options


Archives

July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
July 2001
June 2001
May 2001
April 2001
March 2001
February 2001
January 2001
December 2000
November 2000
October 2000
September 2000
August 2000
July 2000
June 2000
May 2000
April 2000
March 2000
February 2000
January 2000
December 1999
November 1999
October 1999
September 1999
August 1999
July 1999
June 1999
May 1999
April 1999
March 1999
February 1999
January 1999
December 1998
November 1998
October 1998
September 1998


JiscMail is a Jisc service.

View our service policies at https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/policyandsecurity/ and Jisc's privacy policy at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/website/privacy-notice

Secured by F-Secure Anti-Virus CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager