Photograph by Gerd Ludwig
The Broken Empire
The Cossacks
Moscow, Russia. 1997
Photographs of young trainees draw laughs at a gathering of young Cossacks; an earring like the one Mikhail Chernikov, at right, wears, in Cossack tradition signals that he is the only male supporting his family, excusing the him from hazardous battle duty.
Novocherkassk, Russia. 1997 
Reflective of her future part in Cossack society, a young girl watches a parade in  Novocherkassk from the sideline. Girls inherit a passive role in this macho world: cooking, keeping house, minding the children.
Photograph by Gerd Ludwig
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