The New York Times

Why Women Had Better Sex Under Socialism

Kristen R. Ghodsee, a professor of Russian and East European studies at the University of Pennsylvania, is the author of numerous books on European communism and its aftermath, including, most recently, “Red Hangover: Legacies of 20th-Century Communism.” This is an essay in the series Red Century, about the history and legacy of communism 100 years after the Russian Revolution.

When Americans think of communism in Eastern Europe, they imagine travel restrictions, bleak landscapes of gray concrete, miserable men and women languishing in long lines to shop in empty markets and security services snooping on the private lives of citizens. While much of this was true, our collective stereotype of communist life does not tell the whole story.

Some might remember that Eastern bloc women enjoyed many rights and privileges unknown in liberal democracies at the time, including major state investments in their education and training, their full incorporation

This article originally appeared in .

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