Geography Education
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The Russian Cross

The Russian Cross | Geography Education |

The economic and social turmoil after the fall of the Soviet Union was profound enough to be seen in the demographic statistics.  Birth rates dropped as the death rates went up.  Typically when birth rates drop it is presented as an indicator of social development, but it clearly is not in this instance.  What explains these statistics?  

James Hobson's curator insight, October 20, 2014 9:30 PM

(Russia topic 4)

The "Russian Cross" refers to the point at which Russia's population began to shrink. The number of births 'crossed' beneath the number of deaths occurring in a given period of time. Coinciding with the USSR's collapse, this decline in population hinted at a tougher future for the nation. More elderly and fewer young signify a greater dependency upon those who work, causing more of an economic strain. Ironically, this seems to echo the effects of the American 'baby boomers' as they have been approaching retiring age now. Though other factors are certainly involved, it is interesting to note how different situations as these can have such similar outcomes.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 15, 2014 6:52 PM

This graph shows that while we in the west think of the fall of communism as a freeing and positive event in reality many in Russia have been severely damaged by this. While the Soviet government was known for oppression it also provided security and was dependable. With its fall the people were plunged into confusion leading to a decline in birthrate and a raise in suicide and alcoholism.    

Danielle Lip's curator insight, February 16, 7:42 PM

This graph of Births, Death and Natural Growth shows that the Natural Growth along with the Births in Russia have declined since 1950, the main downfall is during the collapse of the U.S.S.R. While the Deaths in Russia are increasing gradually as the collapse of the U.S.S.R approacher. There are many factors that could be causing deaths in Russia, people are not getting enough food into their systems and sickness is easily attracted. The real for the downfall in births is because women and men are not mating and having a child because they are too busy working and building a life for themselves. Back in 1950-1952 families were consisting of 3-4 children and now families only have one child at maximum 2.  How can Russia increase these birth and natural growth rates? The social development of Russia must increase and people have to start living life differently.

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