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Politics in Russia (2nd Edition)

by Thomas F. Remington

Buy the book: Thomas F. Remington. Politics in Russia (2nd Edition)

Release Date: 01 June, 2001

Edition: Paperback


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Buy the book: Thomas F. Remington. Politics in Russia (2nd Edition)

A Comprehensive Text on Modern Russian Politics

I used this book with some success in my upper division course on Russian politics. The book addresses Russian politics after the implosion of the Soviet system. The book is comprehensive, but its attention to detail does not destract the reader from main points. This is important, because textbooks often become unreadable due to excessive irrelevant information. This in not the case with Remington's book. The writing style is rather pedestrian, but for a textbook, it is more than adequate. This book cover events in Russia up until 1997, so this book, or at least this edition is a bit dated. Events in Russia are changing very fast, and the author is not responsible for not being able to churn out a textbook that is 100 percent up to date. For a more popular analysis of events in Russia afer 1991 see David Remnick's "Resurrection." I recommend this textbook for any undergraduate class in Russian politics.


Remington's Politics in Russia

I have twice used Remington's Politics in Russia as a text in my Russia Politics course for intermediate political science students. -- It is an excellent text for students. Most of my students thought the book was readable, comprehensive, sufficiently detailed, and clear. -- It is an excellent text from which to teach, comparative in nature, adequately comprehensive, short (244 pages), and without a strong personal bias.

Remington's approach is the comparative politics approach of Almond and Powell -- systems from socialization through interest aggregation and policy making to implementation and feedback. His book is a broader, more detailed version of his chapter in Almond and Coleman's Comparative Politics Today (Longman) 2000.

For a short book, it is comprehensive. It lacks, however, a development of the historical context of the Russian political system. Its chapters 1 and 2 are sufficient for his purposes, but they do not give a student, with little or no knowledge of late 19th and 20th century Russian history, an adequate overview of the past. Additionally, the book does not discuss sufficiently critical social issues in Russia, although his comparative approach is dependent upon the culture and socialization.

Because the book is short, I can supplement it with other readings (I use a Russian foreign policy text and The Economist)without breaking the student's bank account or having to rely solely on Remington.

The book has no obvious bias, other than its particular comparative approach. It is objective and factual, while raising many of the important value issues. He does not try to sell the reader a particular view of Russian politics.

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