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A Russian Bride as a Prize?

12. September 2011 by Christy 0 Comments

A radio station in Canada has drawn the ire of human rights activists and feminists everywhere by hosting a "Win a Wife" competition offering a Russian woman as a prize.

"If we pick you, you'll be heading to Russia with 13 nights' accommodation, return air fare, and $500 spending money to meet the lucky lady,” reads the website for 100.3 FM’s The Bear.

The Bear’s contest is startling similar to the “Win a Wife” competition hosted by New Zealand’s Rock 100 last February. Both stations used the exact same wording in their advertisements, though Rock 100 offered listeners the chance to meet a woman from Ukraine, not Russia. Despite the similarities, Rob Vavrek, The Bear’s brand director, claims the Canadian station does not "have any relation to the station in New Zealand."

After getting heat from immigration officials and groups like FEMEN, The Rock eventually changed the name of its matchmaking competition from “Win a Wife” to “Win A Trip To Beautiful Ukraine For 12 Nights And Meet Eastern European Hot Lady Who Maybe One Day You Marry." The winner, Greg, reportedly traveled back to New Zealand with the woman he met in Ukraine.

Of course, The Bear, like Rock 100, is not literally giving away a Russian bride. According to Vavrek, the “Win a Wife” contest is simply an opportunity for a Western man and Russian woman “to contact and meet each other in the hopes of developing a serious relationship -- a concept similar to many other such contests held on reality-TV shows over the past few years around the world (IE-The Bachelor/Bachelorette)."


As we’ve said before, men cannot purchase Russian or Ukrainian women for marriage and they certainly can't win one in a radio contest. Unfortunately, it is promotional events like The Rock’s and The Bear's "Win a Wife" competition, light hearted though they may be intended, that promote the stereotype that Russian and Ukrainian women are commodities available to the highest bidder.

Source: The Huffington Post