The communal apartment in the works of Irina Grekova and Nina Sadur

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While a good deal of recent scholarly attention has been paid to the Soviet communal apartment, the current literature has not specifically addressed how women are affected by living in such a space. Russian women have a complicated relationship to the domestic sphere. While the domestic sphere is the center and source of women's power, cultural and social demands require that women bear almost the entire burden of domestic responsibilities. The present work provides a brief history of the Soviet communal apartment and Russian women's relationship to the domestic space. The focus then turns to the literary representation of women's experiences in the communal apartment within the works of two stylistically different Russian women writers, Irina Grekova and Nina Sadur. I argue that despite their differences, both writers portray life in a communal apartment as less than ideal.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-58
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of International Women's Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2005


  • Communal apartment
  • Russian literature
  • Women


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