Political Change In Russia

1034 Words 4 Pages
Russia’s modern political landscape is as much a product of its past as it is of its present. Throughout history, Russia has undergone numerous societal and political transformations. The Eastern Slavs were and are the most significant ethnic and linguistic group of people in Russia and the surrounding countries.1 The Russian Slavs were traditionally regarded as a part of the remote eastern world and for centuries existed in isolation from Europe. During this time, an autocratic system of rule and strict control by the state became prominent, making way for Russia’s Tsarist institution.2 The first notable reform Russia experienced occurred in the late 1700s under Tsar Peter the Great who essentially westernized Russian society and through …show more content…
After the Russian Revolution that abolished the Tsarist autocracy and Stalin’s ascent to power, a civil war between Russia’s newly founded Red Army and the anti-communist White Russian group occurred. The White Russians were aided by Britain, France, and the United States further solidifying Russia’s inherent opposition yet consistent involvement with the Western world which is further demonstrated throughout the Cold War.5 The Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991 is considerably responsible for Russia’s current political upheaval. In the aftermath of the Soviet Union, Russia’s civil society proved virtually non-existent.6 As the previously communistic institutions were dismantled to make way for a more democratized regime, the Russian state faced a lack of structure and oligarchs assumed power, resulting in Russia’s present, highly regulated authoritarian …show more content…
One survey stated that most Russians believe that their political participation would not change anything, and another study asserted that 85 percent of Russians feel that they have no influence over government decisions.20 Governmental control over the media and fixed political elections also illustrate the limited influence Russian citizens have on the politics of their state. A weak civil society and lack of social capital, both products of the deterioration of the Soviet Union, are other significant reasons for the poverty of participation in Russia.21 Evidently, Russian citizens’ political influence is largely unimportant, and at most their participation must come in the form of disapproval and an unwillingness to engage with the government. However, recently, Russia has seen some more participation through activism and protestation, urging yet another political transformation within the state.22 In conclusion, Russia’s turbulent political history of autocratic rule provides context for the current state of Russia’s political culture in reference to its deficient yet increasingly vocal civic

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