COMMUNISTS: Rule of Skin

One way of assessing the political climate in Eastern Europe is to apply what might be called the rule of skin: the extent to which a regime tolerates the exposure of female flesh often indicates the future direction of its cultural and sometimes even political policies. Thus, depending upon the varying fortunes of hard-lining and liberal factions—and the tolerance of the highly puritanical Soviets—hemlines may be permitted to rise thigh-high and then suddenly be ordered lowered. In nightclubs, breasts and bellies are alternately bared and covered up as a regime gyrates...

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