Russia Events

Tolstoy and Russian Politics

November 28, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Kennan Institute
This illustrated talk will explore why Tolstoy continues to be such a politically explosive figure in Russia today. As well as providing an overview of the writer’s often fraught relationship with the Tsarist regime, it will show how the Soviet government systematically sought to suppress his religious and philosophical legacy after 1917, and how the Kennan Institute played a crucial role in preserving it.

British Plans and Attempts at Subversion in Romania, 1939-44

November 22, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Global Europe Program
Dennis Deletant, Visiting Ion Ratiu Professor of Romanian Studies at Georgetown University and formerly professor of Romanian studies at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at University College in London charts the operations in Romania between 1939 and 23 August 1944, the date of King Michael’s coup against Antonescu.

The Tolerance Program in St. Petersburg (2006-2011): Its Logic and First Results

November 17, 2011 // 3:30pm5:30pm
Kennan Institute

Peasants Under Siege: The Collectivization of Romanian Agriculture, 1949-1962—On Creating Communist Authority in Everyday Life

November 16, 2011 // 12:00pm1:30pm
Global Europe Program
Gail Kligman, professor of sociology at UCLA and director of UCLA's Center for European and Eurasian Studies will discuss her latest book entitled Peasants Under Siege which explores the collectivization campaign in Romania (1949-1962) and its far-reaching effects.

Weimar Russia? Why Post-Soviet Authoritarianism Did Not Turn Fascist

November 15, 2011 // 3:30pm5:30pm
Kennan Institute
The speaker will compare inter-war Germany and post-communist Russia, and compare both nations’ very different political paths. Like in Weimar Germany, in today’s Russia, fascist actors are present, and nationalism is widespread in the population. The post-Soviet Russian situation is, however, distinct from the inter-war German one in that the party system is heavily manipulated and the third sector remains underdeveloped. Fascists have thus neither had a chance to use elections nor did they have the opportunity to penetrate civil society in order to build up political support. The continuing presence of a resolutely authoritarian, yet non-fascist "national leader" (Vladimir Putin) is a hindrance for the country to become a liberal democracy, but makes it, for the time being, also improbable that the Russian regime will transgress towards fascism.

Book Discussion: The Orthodox Church and Russian Politics

November 14, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Kennan Institute
Irina Papkova will present the major findings of her recent book, "The Orthodox Church and Russian Politics," which was jointly published by Oxford University Press and the Woodrow Wilson Center press in April 2011. The book examines church-state relations in post-Soviet Russia, and questions popular assumptions about the close nature of the relationship between the Orthodox church and the Putin regime in particular.

Privatization in the Russian Federation: The Rise of Market-Based Systems in Modern Russia

October 24, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Kennan Institute
President Medvedev recognizes that a well-conceived economic program, designed to create an independent broad based and self-sustaining private sector will improve Russia's position and image as a global superpower. The improvement in the quality of life for the average Russian is also an essential element, both economically, politically and socially for the Russian Federation. In Russia, the continuing development of privatization must be part of an overall reform package involving continued de-regulation, progressive taxation and a strong and viable monetary policy.

Counting Coup? Evolving Memories of August 1991 in Russia

October 17, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Kennan Institute
August 19, 2011 marked the 20th anniversary of the 1991 coup attempt in Russia. Harley Balzer argued that the combination of “strong opposition, resistance, subversion, and bureaucratic inertia” were crucial in defeating the Communist party leaders’ attempt to seize power from Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev in August 1991. As memories fade and the Russian government seeks to undermine belief in popular political efficacy, the prevailing narrative of August 1991 suggests that an ill-conceived and poorly executed attempt to seize power failed because of its leaders’ incompetence, their serious miscalculation of public opinion, or Gorbachev’s failure to support political allies whose actions he had previously endorsed.

Book Discussion: Citizens in the Making in Post-Soviet States

October 11, 2011 // 12:00pm1:00pm
Kennan Institute
The political outlook of young people in the countries of the former Soviet Union is crucial to their countries’ future political development. This is particularly relevant now as the first generation without firsthand experience of communism at first hand is approaching adulthood. Based on extensive original research and including new survey research amongst young people, this book examines young people’s political outlook in countries of the former Soviet Union; it compares and contrasts Russia, where authoritarianism has begun to reassert itself, and Ukraine, which experienced a democratic breakthrough in the aftermath of the Orange Revolution.

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