FEMINIST CONTRADICTIONS ARE UNCOVERED
IN A TOPLESS UKRAINIAN PROTEST GROUP
Ukraine is a country that has a pretty low profile in the U.S., reflecting the fact that there are only about 960,000 Americans of Ukrainian descent (as of the 2006 census), which represents a mere 0.33 percent of the American population. However, those of us for whom Ukraine is part of our genetic and cultural makeup see beyond the modest numbers.
We know Ukraine as the fabled breadbasket of Eastern Europe; the heartland of the Kievan-Rus, from whom sprang a family of Slavic peoples, including the Russians and Belarus; home of Taras Bulba, the semi-fictional warrior hero (immortalized in a really lousy movie starring, if you can imagine it, Yul Brynner and Tony Curtis). Indeed, much of the great Slavic cultural bounty can be traced to Ukraine, particularly to its capital, Kiev, an ancient center of literature and learning in the Cyrillic linguistic tradition.
But all of this proud heritage has been topped (so to speak) by Ukraine’s latest gift to world civilization. That would be Femen, the Kiev-based feminist protest group known for bare-breasted demonstrations on the streets of Europe’s cities.
Sworn to oppose “sexual and political repression,” Femen stages what the UK’s Independent calls “carefully choreographed media stunts,” acting on the slogan…
“Our mission is protest, our weapons are bare breasts.”