Nadezhda Krupskaya's Influence on Bolshevik Feminism
Southern New Hampshire University
To westerners, the Russian pedagogue and communist activist, Nadezhda Krupskaya, is remembered primarily, if not solely, as Vladimir Lenin's wife. Krupskaya’s obscurity is mostly related to the west’s tendency to marginalize Russian and communist intellectuals. With new information coming to light, Krupskaya is among the more prominent feminists of the time, such as Alexandra Kollontai and Clara Zetkin, despite being overshadowed by them. With a pedagogical lens, Krupskaya’s interests were rooted in female and proletariat emancipation not just from capitalism, but the patriarchal chains of it as well and thus influenced Bolshevik feminism in many notable ways. For example, Nadezhda Krupskaya influenced the Bolsheviks’ feminism because she was mostly responsible for the engendering of class issues, she initiated the development of social programs that positively impacted women, and her participation in the Rabotnista and Zhenotdel.