Tajikistan is a small, largely Muslim, post-Soviet Central-Asian republic, situ . duction, Islam views sex and sexual pleasure as important components of reli. It takes two to tango: Tajiks eye targeting 'men of loose morals' in tackling Clampdown on Sex Industry in Tajikistan Legalised Prostitution in Tajikistan? Catcallers in the Tajik capital might want to bite their tongue following the introduction of strict new measures against street harassment.
A new law setting out tougher penalties for sex workers in Tajikistan is unlikely to curb the industry, as its roots lie in endemic poverty and. Sex Sells, Even in Tajikistan. Analyzing the Kyrgyz election and just who does Turkmenistan think it's fooling? Friday links. Catherine Putz. Fewer jobs and a worsening exchange rate hits households supported by expats in Russia. A new law setting out tougher penalties for sex.
Tajikistan is a small, largely Muslim, post-Soviet Central-Asian republic, situ . duction, Islam views sex and sexual pleasure as important components of reli. 29When I first arrived in Tajikistan in , sex was still a taboo subject. I never heard of anyone being informed about it except immediately before marriage but. Catcallers in the Tajik capital might want to bite their tongue following the introduction of strict new measures against street harassment.
Sex new sex setting out tougher penalties for sex workers in Tajikistan is unlikely to curb the industry, as its tajikistan lie in endemic poverty and unemployment. The Central Asian country's parliament has passed legal amendments doubling the fine for soliciting to the equivalent of US dollars, or a 15 days' house arrest. Most significantly, every charge will be taken to court. These penalties sex unlikely to curb the number of sex workers, or tjikistan others from becoming involved.
Sex workers in sex capital Dushanbe say they only earn about five dollars a day, but they cannot find other ways of earning this small income and are often trapped by their sex. I divorced my husband, and my brother made me leave the house," said Sitora, Some men treat us badly - they pay 40 or 50 somoni, take us outside the city, beat us up and take the money tajikistan.
Investigative reporter Muhayo Nozimova believes that instead of punitive measures, job creation and better education provision are the only ways of breaking the cycle of female poverty and exploitation. Log tajikistan. Remember Me. Forgot password? Email tajikistan sez Printable version. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content.
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Despite recent efforts, city police say they received about 10 complaints from women about street harassment in the past two weeks alone. See the original story in Tajik here. Search Search. Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Tajikistan Turkmenistan Uzbekistan.
Armenia Azerbaijan Georgia. Afghanistan Pakistan. Belarus Ukraine. Previous Next. September 15, GMT. By Mirzonabi Kholiqzod Farangis Najibullah. Retrieved 29 January Retrieved Retrieved 21 July Retrieved 22 July Retrieved 25 July The Diplomat. SBS News. Department of State. Archived from the original on 3 July This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 1 August They may have greater physical and sexual mobility but the pressures to conform to gender norms are no less intense, as this paper will demonstrate.
Sex is still not easily discussed in former Soviet Central Asia, despite the arrival of hard and soft forms of pornographic videos from Russia and blatant sexual displays in television programmes broadcasted even during prime-time viewing hours Goldschmidt Despite this attitude coming from educated women, large numbers of less educated Tajiks of both sexes seemed eager to discuss the sexual issues troubling them see Harris ; a; b.
In , I founded an NGO to provide grassroots transformative education in rural communities. Eventually, our work expanded to include sex education and the training of sex-education teachers for schools, as well as sexological training for psycho-social counsellors and medical practitioners.
The end of the post-Soviet period in Tajikistan produced a significant shock, not only because it ended the still high levels of social and economic stability, but also because it ended a form of protection from the outside world.
Once the barriers came down, all kinds of influences flooded into Tajikistan, along with the material infrastructure through which to relate to them, such as video-cassette recorders VCR for watching movies, particularly pornography, the subject of this paper. While reminiscing about her early-married years, she spontaneously brought up her marital relationship.
Before proceeding to deflower her, Haydar apologetically explained that it was an obligatory part of the wedding ritual. Sitora said the experience was most painful, and the following day she felt dreadful and could hardly walk. Gradually she got used to sex, although she still did not like it and found it unfortunate that Haydar wanted it so often.
As time went on her opinion did not change; she only put up with sex because of her love for Haydar and the fact that her mother-in-law had told her that if she did not comply with his demands, he might go to other women.
One of them was talking about what a man should do for his wife to enjoy sex. He said the woman had to climax first and only then should the man let himself go. The Russians were amazed that she had allowed such behaviour. Haydar said they had not known a woman could enjoy sex so it had not occurred to his wife that she had been treated unfairly. Sitora became furious, accusing him of having a lover and of practising on his wife the tricks he had learned with his mistress.
Every night he tried to give her pleasure in bed and every night she refused to allow it. Realizing that Haydar had probably been telling the truth, Sitora went home and apologised for misjudging him.
Only then did she allow him to show her what he had learned; once they got the hang of it, she thought it was great! After that, they never again had sex without him making sure that she was enjoying it as well and they began to have a wonderful time in bed, greatly improving their relationship 1. This was a beautiful memory Sitora had of her marriage and one she had never before been able to share. She could not discuss such things even with her sisters or close women friends.
However, Sitora and Haydar lived in the confining setting of the former Soviet Union, a place with its own specific approach to sex. Among the first laws the Bolsheviks passed were ones making marriage a civil contract rather than a religious sacrament, thus facilitating the legalisation of divorce; abortions also became easier to obtain. Even beyond this, a movement began to condemn the sexual restrictions of the previous bourgeois lifestyle Carleton , 3.
For instance, Alexandra Kollontai, the most powerful woman among the Bolshevik leaders, claimed that under socialism sex would be as simple as drinking a glass of water and this opened the doors for all kinds of extra-marital relationships Kon , 51ff. As a result of the laxness of social as well as political control over sexuality, men found themselves in a position to impose themselves on women even more than previously.
Since resources were now supposedly held in common, in some circles this was taken to include women, conceptualised as belonging to men rather than as partners with them.
In some cities, women were declared public goods to be shared among all male inhabitants Shtern , This led to the development of a concept of free sex as essential to the socialist movement, which in turn allowed men to justify forcing women to participate in all kinds of sex acts. A refusal could result in their being labelled bourgeois anti-socialist reactionaries, a term with significant negative consequences. It was particularly difficult for younger women such as students to resist pressures to give in to male demands; many had abortions or ended up with unwanted babies while others, abandoned upon pregnancy, committed suicide Geiges and Suvorova ; Hohmann ; Kon As a result, researchers in the Soviet Union started to develop contraceptive technologies at a time when in North America it was a criminal offence even to advocate their use Coliver ; Kon , Divorce was made difficult, abortion outlawed, and all mention of birth control suppressed.
From then until perestroika in the mid s, the public discussion of sex was strongly discouraged. Almost the only writings about sex could be found in samizdat — illegal, home-produced publications circulated under the counter Kon The only person I ever met who had actually read any of these was from Novysibirsk, the famous university town, where during his student days in the late s and early s, samizdat sex manuals had been available, consisting mainly of Western book translations.
A few foreign doctors working in the USSR published accounts of their experiences there. They speak of a very significant level of sexual problems resulting from almost total ignorance. Among issues they addressed were a lack of sexual satisfaction to the point where the majority of Russian women were said never to have experienced an orgasm, considerable brutality around the sex act, and extremely high abortion rates, with a lifetime rate of over twenty-five abortions per woman not uncommon Grey ; Kon ; Shtern , At the same time, stories abounded on extraordinary sexual practices, particularly in larger towns.
For instance, it was said that people were having sex with total strangers in public places, including while riding the metro and buses in Moscow. The large numbers of multiple partners among some social groups was evidenced by correspondingly high rates of STDs, and sexual harassment was common Kon I myself witnessed this last aspect both within the Academy of Science buildings in Moscow and on the metro. In addition, I was told that Party officials frequently forced young women into sexual relations; it was also said that most women in high positions in the Communist Party had slept their way there.
At the time of the October Revolution, in the sedentary plains regions of what are now Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, girls and women lived largely in seclusion. They could only leave their homes accompanied by a family member and wearing a long cloak over a thick horsehair veil, without even eye holes 4.
Once thriving from the traffic of the Silk Road, between around and , the region had since been largely cut off from the outside world. After , Central Asia was once more largely cut off from contact beyond its southern borders. In the mid s, the region was divided into republics; the Republic of Tajikistan in its present form came into being in While the Russian rulers tried hard to persuade the Central Asians to modify their gender identities and bring them closer to those of the Slavs, largely by forcing them to abandon veiling, seclusion and other related customs, they did not succeed in significantly moderating the underlying gender norms.
One way these were manifested was in strict control over female mobility, especially of unmarried girls, something that continues to this day. The messages they gave them about what would happen should their hymen somehow become ruptured before their wedding night so frightened those with whom I have discussed the issue that they fetishised what they had between their legs to the point of freezing all feeling in that area, for most.
Irrespective of cost, it had to be preserved until the wedding night. It is hardly surprising then that brides were rarely ready to explore their sexuality. Most women with whom I discussed the subject said that all they knew in advance about the marriage bed was that the experience would be painful and that they would bleed.
Some had not even heard of sex and related the bleeding to menstruation. Among the majority of those with whom I discussed the matter, those who said to have later experienced arousal claimed that this only happened after years of marriage, usually upon reaching their thirties. Few men seemed to make any particular attempt to arouse or satisfy their wives.
This was true even for some who claimed to want their wives to respond sexually Harris b. I never heard of anyone being informed about it except immediately before marriage but even this was rare. During the late s, I worked with many hundreds of teenagers in the villages of southern Tajikistan and they all claimed never to have received any information on sex from an adult.
In fact, most of the adults I knew barely understood anything about sex themselves. He said that luckily he was experienced so he knew what to do but when men were not, or if they had problems functioning, no help was at hand.
Teenage boys we worked with in a number of villages told us their uncles in Tajikistan it is uncles and aunts rather than parents who traditionally advise young people about sex had advised them deliberately to hurt their brides on their wedding night in order to ensure that they would be frightened by them and would thus always obey them, but supplied no further details. A young man who had not been able to consummate his marriage after several months consulted one of our NGO staff.
He knew he was supposed to do something, but did not know what; nor did his wife. He had been too embarrassed to ask a family member but felt that our staff members were so approachable that he felt emboldened to speak. In other words, most boys are expected to know what to do with little if any information or help.
One who cannot do so has equally failed in his obligation towards his parents, although this is rarely talked about since it is even more shameful than a girl losing her virginity. In some families a sheet is still placed underneath the bride for her to bleed on, but very commonly it is the groom who blows the whistle if his bride does not bleed.
Conversely, he may try to find a way to put the blame for his impotence on his bride. She did not seem to welcome the chance to build some kind of emotional relationship first because she had been told that real men just went ahead with their business and she was determined not to allow her husband to fall short of this ideal. When another young man had serious problems with premature ejaculation, his wife saw him as having failed in his performance of masculinity and therefore despised him.
I have met quite a number of Tajik women who, like these two, find it more important for their husband to be admired for his manliness than to have a better relationship with a softer, gentler man who may cause them to be mocked by friends and relatives for his failure to conform.
The fact that in these particular cases the events were taking place within the privacy of the marital bed did not provide sufficient excuse for the inappropriate performance of gender, according to these women Harris In the course of our NGO work, we came across instances of men with so little idea of female anatomy that, not knowing where the vagina was located, they had attempted rather violently to make extra holes in their brides, who had subsequently to be rushed to the hospital pouring with blood.
The pressures on enterprises to be financially viable acted as a stimulus for both the publishing and video industry to produce pornography. For the first time since the s, it was permitted to speak openly about sex.
After the fall of the Soviet Union, this intensified; many Western pornographic movies were dubbed into Russian and by the mid s, had become easily available Goldschmidt