The 'Right' to Control Her Own Body?: Soviet Women, Abortion and the State

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2011


Johns Hopkins University Press


During the Cold War era, many westerners considered the Soviet Union a repressive threatening entity, one that possessed nuclear weapons, issued military threats, enacted violence, repressed dissidents, and fostered alcoholism. Some took a more measured view; after all, this was a country that produced Sputnik as well as outstanding Soviet writers, musicians, and scientists. Moreover, the communist system provided basic (even if problematic) education, healthcare, and housing for its populace. The Soviet Union seemed marked by contradictions.