ONLINE: This lecture-based course covers the development of the Russian Federation after the demise of the Soviet Union under Boris Yeltsin, from 1991 to late 1999, and Vladimir Putin, from late 1999 to the present. Emphasis is on a contextual examination of the unstable political functioning of a quasi-democratic presidential system of government, from the rise of “oligarch” economic power following Soviet economic rule to the consolidation of supreme political power under Putin in his United Russia political party. Coverage includes Putin’s foreign policy in the occupation of South Ossetia in Georgia in 2008, the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the occupation of four eastern Ukrainian provinces in 2022. Foreign policy treatment will also focus on Russian-American relations with respect to nuclear arms limitation under the New Start treaty. Students will gain an in-depth political understanding of the current Russian polity not covered in popular media. | Lecture + Q&A.
Max enrollment: 30.
Class sessions are recorded.
William Davidshofer holds a Ph.D. in political science with a specialization in Russian and East European studies from the University of Notre Dame. Since finishing a 42-year career at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, where he was nominated for the Teacher of the Year Award four times, Davidshofer has taught many courses for the OLLI program and received excellent evaluations. He has recently published a work entitled "Marxism and the Leninist Revolutionary Model."