Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Politics - Russia

The final politics story for today is from Russia. Dmitry Medvedev will become Russia's third President later today. The BBC story on this is typical of the speculation that Putin will continue to wield the real power in his new capacity as Prime Minister. Putin has had a fairly poor record on gay rights and as I heard at a conference yesterday those engaging in the new gay rights movement in Russia can still expect limited support from the police (if not attack) and face huge pressure from those inside the country whether neo-fascists or to some extent mainstream opinion. The BBC story can be read at:

Given one nationalist group is calling for the re-criminalization of homosexuality in Russia according to Pink News it will be important that activists continue to monitor the situation in Russia. I heard yesterday at Durham a pervasive view amongst younger gay academics that there isn't really much to fight for now with respect of gay rights. I happen to think there is a radical agenda that still needs to be seized in this country in terms of academic development - particularly around notions of how we view and define sexuality and gender (both currently done within a heteronormative framework) but there is an even bigger agenda at a European and global level. Read the Pink News story at:

Finally, Mr Medvedev has already been dogged by some political activism by one group of Russian performing artists who stripped off back in March at Moscow's Biology Museum in an act they called "Fuck For Medvedev!". You can read the full story and view pictures of the artists at the event (a safe shot of the artists is below) on the Russian/UK newspaper The Exile but please be warned the images are sexually explicit and some viewers may be offended:

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