Smolny Beyond Borders

A Liberal Arts Initiative

Russian Politics after 1991

Russian politics after 1991


Course Schedule:

Fall 2023 | Mon Wed 4:10 – 5:30 PM Berlin (UTC + 2)

Professor: Aleksey Gilev
Semester: Fall 2023
Subject: PS
Course Level: 200
Number of Bard Credits: 4
Course Title: Russian Politics after 1991
Max Enrollment: 22
Schedule: Mon Wed 4:10 – 5:30 PM Berlin (UTC + 2)
Distribution Area: Social Analysis
Cross-Listing(s): Russian and Eurasian Studies, History
Language of Instruction: Russian

This course examines the political trajectory of Russia after 1991. We will look closely at various parameters of the Russian political system and explore their significance – from the public opinion and resource-dependent economy to the design of the Russian Constitution and the elections as a socio-political institution. Aiming to find out what facilitated or hindered the authoritarian backlash, we will review the resources at the disposal of Russian authorities and the opposition. Since Post-Soviet Russian politics is a well-researched field, one of our objectives will be learning how to navigate among dozens of studies and varied perspectives. We will discuss scholarly approaches to electoral manipulation, civic engagement, political values, parties, civil society, the role of business, and welfare policy. Among our other subjects will be the gender and ethnic policies, traditional media vs. the Internet, local and regional politics, Russian courts, the country’s repressive apparatus, and its foreign policy. Students will learn which centers and teams are involved in the empirical research on contemporary Russian politics, what consensus has been reached, and what academic debates are still ongoing.