Gender Montage (Azerbaijan): Paradigms in Post Soviet Space: Wishing for Seven Sons and One Daughter (video)

Gender Montage (Azerbaijan): Paradigms in Post Soviet Space: Wishing for Seven Sons and One Daughter (video)

Resource Type
External Documentary
Publication Year
English (US)




This documentary examines the traditional cultural preference in the Muslim-led state of Azerbaijan for male children that stems from deeply ingrained beliefs and practices about male dominance and female subordination. The cultural devaluing and marginalization of women begins at birth with the preference for male children; mothers are sometimes forced to give up their daughters for fear of punishment or lack of ability to economically support daughters. Men are traditionally the heads of families and are entitled to rights and privileges such as paid work and property that are generally denied or discouraged in women. The film shows that traditional attitudes remain strongly entrenched about a woman's place as subordinate to men (even to male children) and women's confinement to the domestic sphere. The widespread prevailing preference for males also extends far beyond Azerbaijan, leading to gender-skewed populations in many parts of the world as a result of sex-selective infanticide. 

Gender Montage is a series of nine films from nine countries that explores the state of women in the Post-Soviet era. In some places women are impelled merely to get used to the new economic realities, while in other places, their lives are in permanent danger. Almost nowhere do societies wish to listen to their voices when they speak about their realities. Countries include: Azerbaijan, Estonia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Lithuania, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.