The Reincarnation of Russia

Struggling with the Legacy of Communism, 1990–1994

The Reincarnation of Russia

Book Pages: 256 Illustrations: Published: April 1995

European Studies > Eastern Europe and Russia, Politics > Political Science

In The Reincarnation of Russia, John Löwenhardt presents the first in-depth analysis of the initial and crucial stages of Russia’s new statehood. He examines Russia’s recent turbulent history—beginning with the explosive Declaration of State Sovereignty in June 1990, through the adoption of the Yeltsin constitution in the elections of December 1993 and concluding with the early months of 1994. His analysis of Russia’s struggle with the vestige of Soviet Communism and the attempt to create a more democratic form of government offers crucial insight into one of the critical turning points in contemporary history.
Building on analysis of the failure of the Soviet system, Löwenhardt compares the emergence of Russia as a newborn state with other countries that have undergone transitions from authoritarianism toward democracy. Although it is often claimed that Russia is a unique case, the author argues that the lessons of other nations are relevant to the Russian situation. In conjunction with this comparative analysis and with consideration of the significance of the communist and Russian past, Löwenhardt discusses political and economic developments—including both foreign and domestic policy concerns—in Russia over the last four years. He provides a better understanding of the Russian condition and a guarded optimism regarding the ongoing process taking place in Russia today.
The Reincarnation of Russia will be welcomed by scholars with specialized interests in the democratization of Russia, political leaders, journalists, and general readers concerned with the global impact of Russia’s changing status.


“A sensible, well-balanced, and well-documented analysis of recent historical events. . . . The book [offers a] thorough review of the conditions and prerequisites of democracy and the immense obstacles it faces in post-Communist Russia. . . .” — Paul Hollander, Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science

"A real winner! An outstanding book that both builds on past scholarly analyses and sets new paths. The Reincarnation of Russia provides a carefully researched examination of the political transition underway in Russia. It is a thoughtful and perceptive assessment of the problems facing the Russian state and the prospects for ‘success.’" — Roger E. Kanet, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

"Löwenhardt presents the most recent, decisive events and actions of real people leading up to and beyond the drama of the elections of December 1993. He also provides both a thoughtful, historical analysis and an extensive, meticulous exploration of relevant comparative theory. A fine work of scholarship and an exciting narrative." — Jan S. Adams, Director Emerita, University Center for International Studies, Ohio State University


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John Löwenhardt is Senior Lecturer in Politics and Coordinator of the Russian Studies Program at the Institute of East European Law and Russian Studies at Leiden University.

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Paper ISBN: 978-0-8223-1623-7 / Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-1606-0
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