There are 4 empress regnants (Catherine I, Anna, Elizabeth, Catherine II) in Russian history, all of whom ruled during roughly the same historic period (18th century). 3 of them (Anna, Elizabeth, Catherine II) enjoyed absolute power and used it to actively rule.
What were their position and policy regarding women's role in society and their rights? How did they consider their rulership in the context of patriarchal views in society of that time?
Update: some possible relevant historical context
Catherine I: she didn't really care much about state affairs and de-facto delegated ruling to Supreme Privy Council. I haven't found any facts regarding her views on the matter, but presumably she just didn't care much.
Anna: she reestablished absolutism and actively ruled for 10 years. I haven't found any information regarding her views and policies regarding the matter.
Elizabeth: actively ruled for 21 years. According to historian Tamara Talbot Rice, "Later in life her outbursts of anger were directed either against people who were thought to have endangered Russia's security or against women whose beauty rivaled her own".
Catherine II: probably the most interesting case here. Having a 34-year-long extremely successful period of reign, she surely had enough power to change almost anything. She established the first state-financed higher education institution for women in Europe, but I am not sure how feminist does this count, given that the students there weren't taught any professions there, instead it was just a place to teach noble females some "good" values".