• Title: Russia's Unfinished Revolution: Political Change from Gorbachev to Putin
  • Author: Michael McFaul
  • Released: 2002-08-08
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 400
  • ISBN: 0801488141
  • ISBN13: 978-0801488146
  • ASIN: 0801488141
From Library Journal McFaul was a U.S. student in Moscow during the eventful years that saw the collapse of the Soviet Union and the birth of its Russian successor, a process that he describes, rather surprisingly, as "a social revolution on the scale of other great revolutions of the modern era." His book retraces the political history of those daysand the subsequent decade of what he terms the First and Second Russian Republics, divided by Boris Yeltsin's October 1993 assault on the Russian White House. He has done an immense amount of research, and his narrative is dense and solidly anchored in a detailed bibliography. He perhaps underestimates the Russian proclivity for authoritarian state leadership, but he is unambiguously clear about President Putin's antidemocratic tastes. His book complements Steven Fish's Democracy from Scratch (Princeton Univ., 1994) and carries the often discouraging tale of Russia's quest for democracy forward to the new century. For academic libraries and political science specialists. Robert Johnston, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ont.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the edition.

Review "McFaul has done an immense amount of research, and his narrative is dense and solidly anchored in a detailed bibliography. He perhaps underestimates the Russian proclivity for authoritarian state leadership, but he is unambiguously clear about President Putin's antidemocratic tastes. . . This book carries the often discouraging tale of Russia's quest for democracy forward to the new century."—Library Journal, October 2001

"McFaul gives an erudite and well-documented history of the last 15 years, from Gorbachev to Putin. . . He brings striking firsthand experience to bear: The access he managed to obtain, and the time he spent with the revolution's various political players, brings fresh material and keen insight to the story."—Markos T. Kounalakis, The Washington Monthly, October 2001

"McFaul, in an elaborately researched volume, asks why the effort to create new and stable political institutions initially failed—first under Gorbachev and then during Boris Yeltsin's first term—only to succeed under the 'Second Russian Republic'. . . McFaul's book is especially noteworthy for its rich detail, greatly enhanced by interviews with almost all the key players."—Robert Legvold, Foreign Affairs, January/February 2002

"The author is one of the most distinguished and engaged commentators on Russian politics. . . He has produced a highly sophisticated, balanced and informative analysis of the emergence of Russian democracy that leaves open the question of whether it will become a consolidated democracy."—Richard Sakwa, University of Kent at Canterbury. International Affairs, April 2002

"Michael McFaul's book on Russia's transition from communism is likely to prove one of the most lasting and authoritative studies in its field. Particularly valuable is the framework it offers for comprehending the changes that have occurred. . . . Quite apart from the value of the theoretical argument, however, the book is likely to become the authoritative study of the period for its sweep, balance, and clarity."—Thomas F. Remington, Emory University. Journal of Democracy, Vol. 13, No. 3, July 2002

"In the worldwide cabal of Russia-watchers, Mike McFaul is held in high esteem as an insightful commentator and sharp analyst of current political puzzles in Moscow. This book is his claim for a deeper understanding of Russia'a transition. . . . This very rich and dense book deserves many hours of attentive reading."—Journal of Peace Research, Vol. 39, No. 3, May 2002

"Both a path-breaking study of Russian politics and a major work on institutional change, Russia's Unfinished Revolution provides the best analytic and theoretical account I have seen of how and why a broad range of actors may come to accept an ambiguous and flawed regime. The access that Michael McFaul has won and the understanding that he has mobilized are nothing short of breathtaking. This is a deeply informative, fascinating, and at times gripping history."—Larry Diamond, coeditor of the Journal of Democracy

"Even those whose opinions differ from Michael McFaul's interpretations of transformative change in Russian politics since the second half of the 1980s will find this book both stimulating and exceptionally well-informed. McFaul combines theoretical grounding with readability—a far from common achievement."—Archie Brown, Oxford University

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