The plight of women in post-reform Russia has its roots in the combination of the new, untrammelled market system and the old legacy of discrimination. The Soviet Union was the first country to give women equal rights and equal pay, but this was not carried through in practice. This study applies modern econometrics to survey data collected in the USSR. Analysis of data from Russia shows how legislative equality hid actual discrimination. Katz also challenges the conventional wisdom that, for ideological reasons, Soviet manual workers were favoured over the highly educated. This work also includes a critical survey of economic theories of gender and wages and the Soviet wage system. The final chapter brings the debate up to date by examining how old and new mechanisms of gender inequality interact in post Soviet Russia.
KATARINA KATZ is a Research Fellow in the Department of Economics at Stockholm University.