PS 663 Russian Politics

A historic transition is underway in Russia.  Breaking with its authoritarian past, Russia is making an effort to become a market democracy.  During the upcoming semester, we will assess the progress to date and try to determine what the future holds for Russia.  We will focus primarily on three key goals which Russia has set for itself: democracy, the market, and the rule of law.  In each case, we begin by defining the concept and then turn to its applicability in the Soviet and post-Soviet context.  In an effort to understand the legacy with which Russia was confronted when the Soviet Union collapsed in December 1991, we begin with a brief survey of the Soviet era.