Oksana Onypchenko


Introduction. Political-ideological discourse of the 1920s was based on Marxist ideas that living conditions and material world determine human’s consciousness. Therefore, the reform of housekeeping and along with it the renewed relationship between men and women – as was assumed then – was of political significance, and in this regard, the discussion of such “private topic” as the relationship between the sexes, matrimonial issues, was of interest to many leaders of the party and the government of both sexes – L. Aksel’rod, I. Armand, M. Bukharin, P. Vynohrads’ka, O. Kollontay, N. Krups’ka, A. Lunacharsky, D. Riazanov, S. Smydovych, L. Trots’ky, Om. Iaroslavsky and others. The main shared point of almost all Bolshevik ideologists is impossibility of preserving the former forms of family-marriage relations “based on bare economic calculations”, necessity to create a new household life, a new family, new relationships, based on “spiritual closeness”.

The purpose of the article is to show the process of gender-role of youth socialization through reforming household, marital and family relationships, the impact of party leaders, ideologists of the new authorities and total control of the State over this experiment in the 1920s-1930s. 

Results. In general, a few key areas of discussion in this period can be pointed out: the first approach is “Modernization of household in a Communist way: projects and results”, which highlighted the activities of the Bolshevik authorities aimed at the liberation of women from “home slavery” through the establishment of a wide network of public kindergartens, public catering enterprises; the second approach – “From the traditional to Socialist family: discussions, regulatory acts, results” spotlighting the policy of the Bolsheviks in the sphere of family relations, transformation of marriage and family.

Originality. The conversion of the Bolsheviks in the domestic sphere of the society objectively should have contributed to liberating women from household load, but the attitude of the State, economic and cooperative organizations to reforming household on the residual principle largely slowed down the process that eventually led to an increase in employment of women workers. Legal discourse concerning the new law on marriage and family (December 18, 1917) was about granting equal rights of spouses. For the first time, the woman to be married could keep her name, have a separate place of residence from her husband, to control her income and, in case of divorce could equally claim to get family property. The new marriage law did not cancel religious ceremonies, but deprived them of the right to marriage legalization. From now on, only civil registration was legitimate, both the wedding ceremony and the procedure of divorce much were much simplified. By the way, the new law abolished the concept of “illegimate child” – as born in and out of wedlock – could acquire the same rights. 


political-ideological component; household; family-marriage relations; relations between the sexes; gender-role socialization


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