Demokratizatsiya

Journal covering past and current political, economical, social, and legal changes and developments in the Soviet Union and its successor states.

Articles from Vol. 11, No. 1, Winter

Belarus: To Democracy through Neo-Communism
Since the Belarus presidential elections of 1994, there have been numerous attempts to impose on the Belarusian public the notion that only strengthened and centralized rule will make acceleration of the progressive reforms possible. The obvious inconsistencies...
Constitutional Law and Politics in Russia: Surviving the First Decade
Law in the post-Stalin Soviet system became increasingly important as an instrument of governance, but until nearly the end of the USSR it remained firmly subordinate to the politics of the Communist Party (CPSU). Only in the final years of the Soviet...
Crime and Corruption: Enduring Problems of Post-Soviet Development
In 1994 Demokratizatsiya published its first issue on organized crime and corruption. The issue, a compendium of Russian and American authors, focused on the severity of the problem and its centrality to post-Soviet economic, political, and social...
Demography and Democracy in Russia: Human Capital Challenges to Democratic Consolidation
Two years after the exit of Boris Yeltsin, Russia appeared more stable politically and better off economically. The apparent consolidation of "managed democracy" under Vladimir Putin is applauded by many, both inside and outside Russia, who consider...
From Partiinost to Zakonnost: The Languid Creation of Legal Consciousness in Russia
In the United States, we tend to take "legal consciousness" for granted. The law protects us and defends our liberties in a just and reliable way. Sure, we laugh about the proliferation of lawyers, moan about lawsuits, and cringe at the politicization...
Generational Change in Russia
For most of the 1990s, American foreign policymakers, analysts of Russia in the United States, and leaders of American nongovernmental organizations have pointed to generational change as the beacon of hope for Russia. Because it was believed that...
Introduction to the Tenth Anniversary Issue
Demokratizatsiya has exceeded the expectations of the American University students who hatched the idea in the university dorms eleven years ago. (1) They wanted to start a journal devoted exclusively to the changes under way in the Soviet Union. Nothing...
Is Russia Rising?
A great deal has changed for the better in Russia in the past ten or so years. Political authority is determined by competitive elections at virtually every level. More than 70 percent of Russia's gross domestic product (GDP) is produced in the private...
On the Future of the Russian State
When the Soviet Union was in its death throes, Jerry Hough advised younger scholars to avoid becoming astrologers, or seers, of Russia's future. That profession, in his view, was best left to veterans in the field. He issued this warning at a time...
Post-Sovietology Blues: Reflections on a Tumultuous Decade
It is generally agreed that Soviet studies was caught flat-footed by the collapse of the Soviet Union. Observers of the Soviet scene were trapped by a kind of groupthink: Institutions such as the Communist Party and central planning had existed for...
Russia as an Economic Superpower: Fantasy or Possibility?
For most observers, it was hard to comprehend how the USSR could be an economic superpower supporting a massive military buildup one day and a nation of almost no economic significance the next. One day we are told that the GNP of the USSR is equal...
Sovietology, Post-Sovietology, and the Study of Postcommunist Democratization
What have social scientists learned about postcommunist democratization since the collapse of the USSR in 1991? In our recent book Postcommunism and the Theory of Democracy, Richard Anderson Jr., M. Steven Fish, Philip Roeder, and I argue that many...
The Centrality of Elites
In the 1970s, a doctoral student in the economics department at Harvard could not understand a case study in which two aluminum factories with the same assets produced different outputs. "The tools to understand this were completely absent in the economics...
The End of Three Ideological Eras: What Is Next for the Russian Economy?
[T]he ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else. Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt...
The Russian Left and the French Paradigm
The resurgence of the post-Soviet Russian communists was almost as unexpected for many in the West as was Gorbachev's liberalization of the Soviet political order. Surprise was unwarranted, however. In the Russian Federation of the early 1990s, hyperinflation...
The United States, Russia, and the New Challenges
It is pointless to try to improve the legacy of the cold war. We need to create qualitatively new relations. By "improving" Russian-American relations, we are only prolonging the funeral of the cold war. Today, the main challenge in Russian-American...
The United States, Russia, and the New Challenges
Nikolai V. Zlobin is senior fellow at the Center for Defense Information, Washington, D.C., where he edits the Washington ProFile newsletter. He is also an executive editor of Demokratizatsiya.It is pointless to try to improve the legacy of the cold...
The War on Terrorism in Central Asia and the Cause of Democratic Reform
Since the attacks of 11 September and the emergence of a U.S. security partnership with several of the states of the Central Asian region, there has been much speculation about what this means for the prospects of democratic reform in all five of those...
Trade Access versus an Economic Model
Diverse Paths of Postcommunist Transformation After a decade, the outcomes of postcommunist transformation are varied. In the former Soviet bloc, the Central European and the three Baltic countries have so far been the most successful. (1) All have...
With or against the West: Russia's Debate Continues
I made the first of my forty-six trips to Russia in 1989. I found a country where Americans were still a curiosity--prized guests for late night vodka-lubricated discussions on life in the West and Russia's future. For the next several years, the air...
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