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  • Writer's pictureDiverting Hate

The Male State: An Overview of the Russian Manosphere

Content Warning: Sexual Violence, Hate Speech

The Male State (MS) is a Russian far-right group that lives in the inner folds of the Russian Manosphere and provides a place for Russian-speaking misogynists to congregate. In 2021, the Male State made it to the headlines of the Economist, just as it was deemed an extremist organization and banned by the Russian government [1]. Male State adherents follow an official ideology that promotes misogyny, homophobia, racism, and ethnic purification titled “natsional-patriarchat” (national-patriarchate). This belief system is comprised of two overlapping ideologies, patriarchate being the concept of the “correct” hierarchy between men and women in society (with men being the superior gender), and “national” referring to the nationalistic views of its adherents, largely in reference to the revitalization of the Russian state by executing the “correct” gender role division and putting females back in their place.

National-patriarchates are of the opinion that women by nature are selfish, corrupt, and lascivious and that they must be pacified and contained by the shackles of patriarchy [2].

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The Male State: Background

The Male State was founded by Vladislav Pozdnyakov, though followers often refer to him as Dr. Vlad, due in part to his claims of having completed medical school, but largely because it is believed that he is improving, healing, and treating the lives of men with his prescriptive methodology. During his high school years, Pozdnyakov is described to have been quiet and timid. Having ‘disappeared' for a few years after high school, Vladislav later returned to his hometown of Nizhny Novgorod notably more muscular and confident. It was at this time that his career as a fitness coach was launched. Although Pozdnyakov never received official credentials, he attended a medical university for several years; after an unknown conflict with the University’s administration, Vladislav was expelled.

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The Male State: The Early Years

After his expulsion in 2016, Pozdnyakov founded the “Male State” page on (VK), a Russian social media site similar to Facebook. On this page, Pozdnyakov actively promoted his beliefs that an ideal wife should be based on: racial preferences (Slavic or Nordic women only), along with other criteria such as that they wear no makeup and no provocative clothing. In addition, Pozdnyakov propagated the rejection of women who support Russian President Vladimir Putin or express reverence for the former Soviet Union. Today, Pozdnyakov promotes the importance of learning martial arts and marksmanship and gaining muscle through physical training. The group’s rhetoric frequently overlaps with that of Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW), a male separatist group that aims to create segregation between men and women and believes that feminism not only corrupts society but that it is the root of all evil. Male State adherents discourage relationships with women due to a lack of respect and general mistrust, at the same time their opinions are very racist and white supremacist - they do not accept interracial relationships and are very entitled to the “loyalty” of Russian women. Although the general terminology used by members of the Male State is congruent with that of Western far-right adjacent pockets of the manosphere, the Male State is unique in its hateful views of Russian women who date non-Russian men. Since 2016, the Male State has evolved to a fixed ideology, National-patriarchate (национал-патриархал), which promotes patriarchy, dominance, and preservation of the white race, and the view that women are but a biological reproducer. Followers of the Male State are united by their incessant nationalistic need to protect Russia by preserving its patriarchal societal structure and norms. Proponents of national-patriarchatism believe that they need to act to inhibit further decline and decay of Russia by re-introducing the traditional family structure and preserving the Russian State, as well as by re-calibrating gender roles to return to the natural equilibrium of male dominance. Additionally, this ideology urges followers to coalesce against the “enemy” that is actively contributing to the decline of Russia, the list of which includes feminists, LGBT activists, and immigrants from Central Asia and the Caucasus region, which the group sees as “biological garbage” or “биомусор”.

Male State: Tensions Rise

In 2017, chapters of the Male State started sprouting up all over Russia. One such chapter in the Far East was infiltrated by an FSB (Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation) agent, leading to the detention of four members. The incident also confirmed that Pozdnyakov was the head of the Male State. While Pozdnyakov was named several times in connection to the Male State and during the detention of four of its members, he was never detained or questioned [3]. This was largely due to the fact that the Male State’s underlying narrative of maximizing one’s masculinity aligns with the masculinity rhetoric of the Russian government [4]. In 2018, Pozdnyakov was accused of inciting hate and violence toward women after he actively called on his followers to doxx (doxxing: the act of disclosing the private information of targets with malicious intent) Russian women that dated or interacted closely with foreigners who came to Moscow for the World Cup [5]. Many women, both Russian and non-Russian, fell victim to travlya (or, doxxing) which consisted of cyber and real-life threats. As a result of this increased velocity of Male State activities, Pozdnyakov was put on probation for 2 years. However, in 2019, Pozdnyakov immigrated to Poland and the criminal statute under which he was prosecuted was partially decriminalized, leaving him unscathed and more active than ever.

The Male State was officially outlawed by the government of the Russian Federation in October 2021 and deemed as an “extremist” organization that practices “bullying, threatening, and harassment of women'' [6]. Additionally, Pozdnyakov’s three telegram channels were banned - including his personal channel, the official channel of the Male State, and the channel of Pozdnyakov’s side project “butilka1488” (bottle1488). Since butilka1488 was never reactivated, it is difficult to find information on the activity of the group. However, from the title it can be assumed that butilka, meaning bottle, refers to the term “na butilke'' or “posadit’ ta butilku” or, to make someone sit on a bottle. In Russia, this refers to using a bottle to anally rape somebody, with the origins of the term derived from a case where a man died in police custody after being tormented and incurring several internal injuries from the aforementioned torture [7]. On Russian-speaking websites, the term is used to express disdain and insult the recipient, when the sender tells someone to go sit on a bottle. As for the 1488 in butilka1488, it is a secret code utilized by neo-nazis to identify one another, whereas 14 refers to the 14 word-statement once issued by the white supremacist leader David Lane: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children” and 88 for Heil Hitler, since H is the eighth letter of the alphabet. Taken together, 1488 draws a parallel between these two figures — the man who died in police custody and Hitler [8].

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Instances of Real Violence Preceding the Ban

The year leading up to the 2021 ban of the Male State was very active for its members - from Sushi Wars [9] to doxxing a member of the feminist group “Pussy Riot” [10], to threatening Russian women over social media who were in relationships with foreign-born men. One particular incident was the harassment of Ekaterina Forlova in 2020 for adopting a child of a different ethnicity [11]. Using published screenshots of Forlova’s social media pages on his Telegram page, Pozdnyakov implied that the child was born out of a pre-marital affair; as a result, members of the Male State proceeded to relentlessly spam her page. Forlova chose not to go to the police for fear of worsening the situation and attracting more harassment. Further blurring the line between online extremism and offline actions was an incident in August 2020, when one of the followers of the Male State attacked a Russian blogger, hitting her in the face on the street and stating that she “deserved it'' since she was publishing “inappropriate content”. Matters became increasingly heated in August 2021, when a Russian sushi chain called EbiDoebi published an advertisement featuring a model of a different ethnicity. In response, the Male State launched a full-scale cyber attack on the franchise, instigating what came to be known as the “sushi wars''. On August 24th, 2021, Pozdnyakov posted the ad on his telegram channel and urged his followers to leave bad reviews for the restaurant and place fake orders. Responding to the call to action, Male State followers attacked the company online and accused it of promoting “multiculturalism”, refusing to pay for food orders upon delivery, and demanding a public apology to the Russian nation for promoting “multiculturalism propaganda” [12]. Additionally, Pozdnyakov made public the personal cell of Konstantin Zimen, one of the founders of the franchise, resulting in numerous violent threats on both Zimen and several models from the ad. Stopping their barrage of attacks once the advertisement was removed from social media, the Male State moved on to doxxing the owners of Tanuki, another sushi franchise that had reposted EbiDoebi’s advertisement in support of the company. Unlike the case of EbiDoebi, the owners of Tanuki did not comply with the demands of the Male State. Instead, they publicly called out Pavel Durov, the creator of VK and Telegram — two of the largest social media platforms in Russia — for allowing Male State groups to congregate on these platforms to no avail. The Male State continued to operate on the aforementioned social media platforms until the official government ban was issued on the organization, and Pozdnyakov has successfully launched a new Telegram channel.

Male State and Manosphere Nexus

To better understand the online proliferation of extremist ideologies, it is crucial to understand the connection between Russian and English speakers through online gaming and internet communities. This is particularly true given that US-based misogynists and incels often resort to using Russian social media platforms like Vkontakte, Telegram, and Odnoklassniki (or These platforms offer less stringent moderation, a broader audience reach, and enhanced anonymity, thereby minimizing the risk of detection, and affording individuals fewer restrictions and consequences as they seek like-minded communities. One striking example of this cultural crossover is Allen, Texas shooter Mauricio Garcia’s activities on, where he consistently posted far-right and neo-Nazi content without detection. Additionally, Garcia’s other posts reveal that he dedicated substantial time to scouting and researching the shooting site, meticulously determining the busiest periods at the mall without triggering any alarms.

Understanding the Male State holds value in a broader context because the internet is a global platform that enables the seamless exchange of ideas, ideologies, and terminologies, fostering extensive interaction between Russian-speaking individuals and U.S. citizens due to its borderless nature.

In Diverting Hate’s ongoing research, we have observed the utilization of Russian language terms by Russian-speaking individuals across Eurasia, and these terms frequently reference the presence of extremist groups and organizations whose members reside abroad in the U.S. and in Europe, especially following the mass exodus from Russia in the wake of the war in Ukraine. Although the exact extent of the usage of Russian terms by non-Russian speakers requires further investigation, capturing and studying the cross-cultural proliferation of extremist ideologies on online platforms across all cultures remains relevant to the prevention of misogynistic-motivated violence in the United States. Thus, Diverting Hate believes that capturing linguistic markers and monitoring the proliferation of extremist ideologies on Russian social media platforms, like that of the Male State, allows us to gain invaluable insight that is crucial for the effective prevention of violence.



[1] Tagaeva, Lola (2021, October 9). Комментарий: Почему в России запретили "мужское государство"? [ Why did Russia ban "male state"?]. DW. Retrieved from

[2] Andreeva, K., & Meinhof, R. (2019, March 3). Звериный оскал национал-патриархата ["The Feral Grin of the National-Patriarchate."]. Vestnik Buri. Retrieved from

[3] Zotova, Natalia. (2018, September 7). Как осведомитель ФСБ помог создать "Мужское государство"[How an FSB Informant Helped Create the 'Male State'.]BBC News. Retrieved from

[4] Tagaeva, Lola (2021, October 9). Комментарий: Почему в России запретили "мужское государство"? [ Why did Russia ban "male state"?]. DW. Retrieved from


[6] Sosenkova, Vera (2021, October 18). В России запретили "Мужское государство" [‘Male State’ banned in Russia], DW. Retrieved from




[10] Zhukova, Ksenia (2021, July 29) “«Мужское государство» опубликовало адрес и телефон участницы Pussy Riot. Ей угрожают [The ‘Male State’ published the address and phone number of a member of Pussy Riot. She is being threatened]. Retrieved from”


[12] Zhukovskiy, Ivan (2021, August 30) Все о скандале вокруг «Тануки», «Ёбидоёби» и «Мужского государства» - Газета.Ru ( [Overview of the scandal surrounding Tanuki, Ebidoeby and ‘the male state’] Retrieved from

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