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5 Jun, 2023 13:27

Two thirds of Russians say family head unnecessary – poll

Some 68% of respondents believe important decisions should be made jointly, according to a survey
Two thirds of Russians say family head unnecessary – poll

Most Russians believe it is no longer necessary to have a single head of the family and that a rigid gender hierarchy has been replaced by the model of seeking a consensus in the family, a recent poll conducted by the All-Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM) suggests. 

According to the survey, which was published on the organization’s website on Monday and polled some 1,600 people across the country on their beliefs about family structure, the share of Russians who believe there should be a clear head of the family has gone down from 58% to 29% over the past 15 years.   

Only about one in five people said they adhered to the paternalistic model and believed that the eldest man in the house should be the head of the family, and if there isn’t one, then that role should belong to the eldest woman. About 18% believe that the duty of providing for the family should rest with the man and that women should be in charge of the housework and raising children.  

The poll showed that those adhering to the paternalistic model of decision-making in the family are primarily men (23% versus 15% women), and also those with an incomplete secondary education, active television viewers, and residents of villages. 

Meanwhile, over two thirds of respondents, or 68%, instead said that they believe in a consensus model, and that important decisions in the family should be made jointly while smaller ones should be made in accordance with the existing division of responsibilities. Many respondents also said that a strict division of household chores is a thing of the past and that both spouses equally contribute to resolving domestic and family issues. 

Equality in family relations was most often advocated for by women (70% versus 64% of men), people between the ages of 18 and 34, those with at least a secondary education, residents of Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as those who prefer the internet over traditional television.