Surviving Autocracy

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Surviving Autocracy
Title Surviving Autocracy
Author
Publisher Riverhead Books
Release DateJune 2, 2020
Category Nonfiction
Total Pages 287 pages
ISBN 0593188934
Book Rating 4.8 out of 5 from 433 reviews
Language EN, ES, BE, DA ,DE , NL and FR
Book Review & Summary:

“When Gessen speaks about autocracy, you listen.” —The New York Times “The Platonic ideal of the anti-Trump Trump book.” —The Washington Post As seen on MSNBC’s Morning Joe and heard on NPR’s All Things Considered: the bestselling, National Book Award–winning journalist offers an essential guide to understanding, resisting, and recovering from the ravages of our tumultuous times. In the run-up to the 2016 election, Masha Gessen stood out from other journalists for the ability to convey the ominous significance of Donald Trump’s speech and behavior, unprecedented in a national candidate. Within forty-eight hours of his victory, the essay “Autocracy: Rules for Survival” had gone viral, and Gessen’s coverage of Trump’s norm-smashing presidency became essential reading for a citizenry struggling to wrap their heads around the unimaginable. Thanks to the special perspective that is the legacy of a Soviet childhood and two decades covering the resurgence of totalitarianism in Russia, Gessen has a sixth sense for signs of autocracy—and the unique cross-cultural fluency to delineate its emergence to Americans. This incisive book provides an indispensable overview of the calamitous trajectory of the past few years. Gessen not only highlights the corrosion of the media, the judiciary, and the cultural norms we hoped would save us but also tells us the story of how a short few years have changed us from a people who saw ourselves as a nation of immigrants to a populace haggling over a border wall, heirs to a degraded sense of truth, meaning, and possibility. Surviving Autocracy is an inventory of ravages but also a beacon to recovery—or to enduring, and resisting, an ongoing assault.

Similar books related to " Surviving Autocracy " from our database.

Surviving Autocracy by Masha Gessen

Title Surviving Autocracy
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2020-06-02
Category Political Science
Total Pages 288
ISBN 9780593188941
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

“When Gessen speaks about autocracy, you listen.” —The New York Times “A reckoning with what has been lost in the past few years and a map forward with our beliefs intact.” —Interview As seen on MSNBC’s Morning Joe and heard on NPR’s All Things Considered: the bestselling, National Book Award–winning journalist offers an essential guide to understanding, resisting, and recovering from the ravages of our tumultuous times. This incisive book provides an essential guide to understanding and recovering from the calamitous corrosion of American democracy over the past few years. Thanks to the special perspective that is the legacy of a Soviet childhood and two decades covering the resurgence of totalitarianism in Russia, Masha Gessen has a sixth sense for the manifestations of autocracy—and the unique cross-cultural fluency to delineate their emergence to Americans. Gessen not only anatomizes the corrosion of the institutions and cultural norms we hoped would save us but also tells us the story of how a short few years changed us from a people who saw ourselves as a nation of immigrants to a populace haggling over a border wall, heirs to a degraded sense of truth, meaning, and possibility. Surviving Autocracy is an inventory of ravages and a call to account but also a beacon to recovery—and to the hope of what comes next.

Surviving Autocracy by Masha Gessen

Title Surviving Autocracy
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Granta Books
Release Date 2020-06-04
Category Political Science
Total Pages 186
ISBN 9781783786770
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

'An indispensable voice of and for this moment' Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny Many of us are consumed by news cycles reporting on Trump's latest astonishing policy or declaration, and the overwhelming sense we have is one of confusion and incredulity - how could this be happening? As the 2020 US Presidential race takes shape, SURVIVING AUTOCRACY provides an indispensable overview of the calamitous trajectory of the past few years. Drawing on her Soviet childhood and two decades covering the resurgence of totalitarianism in Russia, acclaimed New Yorker journalist and prize-winning author Masha Gessen links together seemingly disparate elements of Trump's regime to offer a roadmap for understanding Trump's approach, policies and ultimate aims. Highlighting an inventory of ravages to liberal democracy, including the corrosion of the media, the justice system and cultural norms, she posits that America is in the throws of an autocratic attempt. Gessen's penetrating analysis offers a new political discourse to replace that which has been so thoroughly degraded, and with it, a clearer path to action. Manifesto-like, Surviving Autocracy is threaded with solutions to the current situation, such as developing a political language that encompasses autocratic impulses, a more agile and honest media, and a visionary moral politics to counter Trump's extraordinary on-going assault.

Surviving Autocracy by Masha Gessen

Title Surviving Autocracy
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2020
Category Political Science
Total Pages 288
ISBN 9780593188934
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

"An analysis of the destruction the Trump administration has waged on our institutions, the cultural norms we hoped would save us, and our very sense of identity"--

The Man Without A Face by Masha Gessen

Title The Man Without a Face
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2013
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 329
ISBN 9781594486517
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Documents the Russian prime minister's rapid ascent from a low-level KGB operative to the presidency, describing his selection by an ailing Boris Yeltsin's oligarchy and the ways in which the author believes that his views and ambitions have renewed Russia's threatening position to its citizens and the world. By the author of Perfect Rigor. Reprint. 35,000 first printing.

Words Will Break Cement by Masha Gessen

Title Words Will Break Cement
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2014-01-08
Category Political Science
Total Pages 320
ISBN 9780698135949
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

From National Book Award winner Masha Gessen, the heroic story of Pussy Riot, who resurrected the power of truth in a society built on lies. On February 21, 2012, five young women entered the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow. In neon-colored dresses, tights, and balaclavas, they performed a “punk prayer” beseeching the “Mother of God” to “get rid of Putin.” They were quickly shut down by security, and in the weeks and months that followed, three of the women were arrested and tried, and two were sentenced to a remote prison colony. But the incident captured international headlines, and footage of it went viral. People across the globe recognized not only a fierce act of political confrontation but also an inspired work of art that, in a time and place saturated with lies, found a new way to speak the truth. Masha Gessen’s riveting account tells how such a phenomenon came about. Drawing on her exclusive, extensive access to the members of Pussy Riot and their families and associates, she reconstructs the fascinating personal journeys that transformed a group of young women into artists with a shared vision, gave them the courage and imagination to express it unforgettably, and endowed them with the strength to endure the devastating loneliness and isolation that have been the price of their triumph.

Title American Oligarchs The Kushners the Trumps and the Marriage of Money and Power
Author Andrea Bernstein
Publisher W. W. Norton & Company
Release Date 2020-01-14
Category Political Science
Total Pages 496
ISBN 9781324001881
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A New York Times Bestseller A multigenerational saga of two families, who rose from immigrant roots to the pinnacle of wealth and power, that tracks the unraveling of American democracy. In American Oligarchs, award-winning investigative journalist Andrea Bernstein tells the story of the Trump and Kushner families like never before. Their journey to the White House is a story of survival and loss, crime and betrayal, that stretches from the Klondike Gold Rush, through Nazi-occupied Poland and across the American Century, to our new gilded age. In building and maintaining their dynastic wealth, these families came to embody the rising nationalism and inequality that has pushed the United States to the brink of oligarchy. Building on her landmark reporting for the acclaimed podcast Trump, Inc. and The New Yorker, Bernstein’s painstaking detective work brings to light new information about the families’ arrival as immigrants to America, their paths to success, and the business and personal lives of the president and his closest family members. Bernstein traces how the two families ruthlessly harnessed New York and New Jersey machine politics to gain valuable tax breaks and grew rich on federal programs that bolstered the middle class. She shows how the Trump Organization, denied credit by American banks, turned to shady international capital. She reveals astonishing new details about Charles Kushner’s attempts to ensnare his brother-in-law with a prostitute and explores how Jared Kushner and his father used a venerable New York newspaper to bolster their business empire. Drawing on more than two hundred interviews and more than one hundred thousand pages of documents, many previously unseen or long forgotten, Bernstein shows how the Trumps and the Kushners repeatedly broke rules and then leveraged secrecy, intimidation, and prosecutorial and judicial power to avoid legal consequences. The result is a compelling narrative that details how the Trump and Kushner dynasties encouraged and profited from a system of corruption, dark money, and influence trading, and that reveals the historical turning points and decisions—on taxation, regulation, white-collar crime, and campaign finance laws—that have brought us to where we are today.

The Future Is History by Masha Gessen

Title The Future Is History
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2017-10-03
Category History
Total Pages 528
ISBN 9780698406209
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

WINNER OF THE 2017 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD IN NONFICTION FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARDS WINNER OF THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY'S HELEN BERNSTEIN BOOK AWARD NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2017 BY THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW, LOS ANGELES TIMES, WASHINGTON POST, BOSTON GLOBE, SEATTLE TIMES, CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR, NEWSWEEK, PASTE, and POP SUGAR The essential journalist and bestselling biographer of Vladimir Putin reveals how, in the space of a generation, Russia surrendered to a more virulent and invincible new strain of autocracy. Award-winning journalist Masha Gessen's understanding of the events and forces that have wracked Russia in recent times is unparalleled. In The Future Is History, Gessen follows the lives of four people born at what promised to be the dawn of democracy. Each of them came of age with unprecedented expectations, some as the children and grandchildren of the very architects of the new Russia, each with newfound aspirations of their own--as entrepreneurs, activists, thinkers, and writers, sexual and social beings. Gessen charts their paths against the machinations of the regime that would crush them all, and against the war it waged on understanding itself, which ensured the unobstructed reemergence of the old Soviet order in the form of today's terrifying and seemingly unstoppable mafia state. Powerful and urgent, The Future Is History is a cautionary tale for our time and for all time.

Twilight Of Democracy by Anne Applebaum

Title Twilight of Democracy
Author Anne Applebaum
Publisher Signal
Release Date 2020-07-21
Category Political Science
Total Pages 208
ISBN 9780771005862
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A Pulitzer Prize–winning historian explains, with electrifying clarity, why elites in democracies around the world are turning toward nationalism and authoritarianism. From the United States and Britain to continental Europe and beyond, liberal democracy is under siege, while authoritarianism is on the rise. In Twilight of Democracy, Anne Applebaum, an award-winning historian of Soviet atrocities who was one of the first American journalists to raise an alarm about antidemocratic trends in the West, explains the lure of nationalism and autocracy. In this captivating essay, she contends that political systems with radically simple beliefs are inherently appealing, especially when they benefit the loyal to the exclusion of everyone else. Despotic leaders do not rule alone; they rely on political allies, bureaucrats, and media figures to pave their way and support their rule. The authoritarian and nationalist parties that have arisen within modern democracies offer new paths to wealth or power for their adherents. Applebaum describes many of the new advocates of illiberalism in countries around the world, showing how they use conspiracy theory, political polarization, social media, and even nostalgia to change their societies. Elegantly written and urgently argued, Twilight of Democracy is a brilliant dissection of a world-shaking shift and a stirring glimpse of the road back to democratic values.

Where The Jews Aren T by Masha Gessen

Title Where the Jews Aren t
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Jewish Encounters
Release Date 2016
Category HISTORY
Total Pages 170
ISBN 9780805242461
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In 1929, the Soviet Union declared the area of Birobidzhan a homeland for Jews. It was championed by a group of intellectuals who envisioned a place of post-oppression Jewish culture, and by the early 1930s, tens of thousands of Jews had moved there from the shtetls. The state-building ended quickly, in the late 1930s, with arrests and purges of the Communist Party and cultural elite, but after the Second World War, the newly named "Jewish Autonomous Region" received an influx of Jews dispossessed from what had once been the Pale, most of whom had lost families in the Holocaust. In the late 1940s, another wave of arrests swept through Birobidzhan, traumatizing the Jews into silence, and effectively making them invisible. Now Masha Gessen gives us a haunting account of the dream of Birobidzhan-and how it became

The Intoxicating Mr Lavelle by Neil Blackmore

Title The Intoxicating Mr Lavelle
Author Neil Blackmore
Publisher Random House
Release Date 2020-04-30
Category Fiction
Total Pages 336
ISBN 9781473574199
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

__________________________ 'Seductive, decadent, cruel and utterly thrilling - just like Horace Lavelle himself. This is The Talented Mr Ripley for the twenty-first century.' Emma Flint, author of Little Deaths 'An enjoyable dip into decadence.' Observer __________________________ Brothers Benjamin and Edgar have so far led a quiet life, but change is afoot as they enter a world of glorious sights and People of Quality on their Grand Tour of Europe. But a trunk full of powdered silver wigs and matching suits isn't enough to embed them into high society. As Edgar clings on to conventions, Benjamin pushes against them. And when the charming, seductive Horace Lavelle promises Benjamin a real adventure, it's only a matter of time before chaos and love ensue. __________________________ 'A fizzing, seductive queer romance.' i Paper 'Wildly entertaining and painfully heartbreaking ... Neil Blackmore writes with a fizzy wit that bounds his characters off the page.' Ben Aldridge

Shadow State by Luke Harding

Title Shadow State
Author Luke Harding
Publisher HarperCollins
Release Date 2020-06-30
Category Political Science
Total Pages 336
ISBN 9780062966056
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A thrilling account of how Russia is waging a hidden war against America and the West, using espionage, corruption, fake news, and KGB-style murder March 2018. Two Russian assassins arrive in a provincial English city to kill a former officer from Russia’s GRU intelligence agency. His crime? Passing secrets to British spies. The poison? A lethal nerve agent, novichok. The attempted execution was a reminder – as if one were needed - of Russia’s contempt for international norms. The Soviet Union and its doctrine are long gone, but the playbook used by the Kremlin’s spies during that long confrontation with the West is back. And the underlying goal remains the same: to undermine democracy and exploit divisions within American and European society and politics. Moscow’s support for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election has grown into the biggest political scandal of modern times. Its American players are well-known. In Shadow State, award-winning journalist and bestselling author Luke Harding reveals the Russians behind the story: the spies, hackers and internet trolls. Harding charts how the Kremlin has updated Communist-era methods of influence and propaganda for the age of Facebook and Twitter, and considers the compelling question of our age: what exactly does Vladimir Putin have on President Trump? Similar to those of the Cold War, Putin’s ambitions are truly global. His emissaries include oligarchs, bankers, lawyers, mercenaries, and agents of influence. They roam from Salisbury to Helsinki, Ukraine to Central Africa, London to Washington, D.C. Shadow State is the singular account of how the Kremlin seeks to reshape the world, to divide the US from its European friends, and to remake America in its own dark and kleptocratic image. This is an essential read for anyone who wants to understand how our politics came to be so chaotic and divided. Nothing less than the future of Western democracy is at stake.

Ester And Ruzya by Masha Gessen

Title Ester and Ruzya
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Dial Press
Release Date 2008-12-30
Category Biography & Autobiography
Total Pages 384
ISBN 9780307484383
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In this “extraordinary family memoir,”* the National Book Award–winning author of The Future Is History reveals the story of her two grandmothers, who defied Fascism and Communism during a time when tyranny reigned. *The New York Times Book Review In the 1930s, as waves of war and persecution were crashing over Europe, two young Jewish women began separate journeys of survival. Ester Goldberg was a rebel from Bialystok, Poland, where virtually the entire Jewish community would be sent to Hitler’s concentration camps. Ruzya Solodovnik was a Russian-born intellectual who would become a high-level censor under Stalin’s regime. At war’s end, both women found themselves in Moscow. Over the years each woman had to find her way in a country that aimed to make every citizen a cog in the wheel of murder and repression. One became a hero in her children’s and grandchildren’s eyes; the other became a collaborator. With grace, candor, and meticulous research, Masha Gessen, one of the most trenchant observers of Russia and its history today, peels back the layers of time to reveal her grandmothers’ lives—and to show that neither story is quite what it seems. Praise for Masha Gessen “One of the most important activists and journalists Russia has known in a generation.”—David Remnick, The New Yorker “Masha Gessen is humbly erudite, deftly unconventional, and courageously honest.”—Timothy Snyder, author of On Tyranny

Post Communist Mafia State by B lint Magyar

Title Post Communist Mafia State
Author B lint Magyar
Publisher Central European University Press
Release Date 2016-03-01
Category Political Science
Total Pages 336
ISBN 9786155513541
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Having won a two-third majority in Parliament at the 2010 elections, the Hungarian political party Fidesz removed many of the institutional obstacles of exerting power. Just like the party, the state itself was placed under the control of a single individual, who since then has applied the techniques used within his party to enforce submission and obedience onto society as a whole. In a new approach the author characterizes the system as the ?organized over-world?, the ?state employing mafia methods? and the ?adopted political family', applying these categories not as metaphors but elements of a coherent conceptual framework. The actions of the post-communist mafia state model are closely aligned with the interests of power and wealth concentrated in the hands of a small group of insiders. While the traditional mafia channeled wealth and economic players into its spheres of influence by means of direct coercion, the mafia state does the same by means of parliamentary legislation, legal prosecution, tax authority, police forces and secret service. The innovative conceptual framework of the book is important and timely not only for Hungary, but also for other post-communist countries subjected to autocratic rules. ÿ

The Demagogue S Playbook by Eric A. Posner

Title The Demagogue s Playbook
Author Eric A. Posner
Publisher All Points Books
Release Date 2020-06-30
Category Political Science
Total Pages 272
ISBN 9781250303028
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A New York Times Book Review Editor's Pick What Happens to Democracy When a Demagogue Comes to Power? "It is hard to imagine understanding the Trump presidency and its significance without reading this book.” —Bob Bauer, Former Chief Counsel to President Barack Obama What—and who—is a demagogue? How did America’s Founders envision the presidency? What should a constitutional democracy look like—and how can it be fixed when it appears to be broken? Something is definitely wrong with Donald Trump’s presidency, but what exactly? The extraordinary negative reaction to Trump’s election—by conservative intellectuals, liberals, Democrats, and global leaders alike—goes beyond ordinary partisan and policy disagreements. It reflects genuine fear about the vitality of our constitutional system. The Founders, reaching back to classical precedents, feared that their experiment in mass self-government could produce a demagogue: a charismatic ruler who would gain and hold on to power by manipulating the public rather than by advancing the public good. President Trump, who has played to the mob and attacked institutions from the judiciary to the press, appears to embody these ideas. How can we move past his rhetoric and maintain faith in our great nation? In The Demagogue’s Playbook, acclaimed legal scholar Eric A. Posner offers a blueprint for how America can prevent the rise of another demagogue and protect the features of a democracy that help it thrive—and restore national greatness, for one and all. “Cuts through the hyperbole and hysteria that often distorts assessments of our republic, particularly at this time.” —Alan Taylor, winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for History

Never Remember by Masha Gessen

Title Never Remember
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Unknown
Release Date 2018
Category
Total Pages 176
ISBN 0997722967
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

,"A book that belongs on the shelf alongside The Gulag Archipelago. -- Kirkus Reviews A haunting literary and visual journey deep into Russia's past -- and present. The Gulag was a monstrous network of labor camps that held and killed millions of prisoners from the 1930s to the 1950s. More than half a century after the end of Stalinist terror, the geography of the Gulag has been barely sketched and the number of its victims remains unknown. Has the Gulag been forgotten?Writer Masha Gessen and photographer Misha Friedman set out across Russia in search of the memory of the Gulag. They journey from Moscow to Sandarmokh, a forested site of mass executions during Stalin's Great Terror; to the only Gulag camp turned into a museum, outside of the city of Perm in the Urals; and to Kolyma, where prisoners worked in deadly mines in the remote reaches of the Far East. They find that in Vladimir Putin's Russia, where Stalin is remembered as a great leader, Soviet terror has not been forgotten: it was never remembered in the first place.

The Defiant Life Of Vera Figner by Lynne Ann Hartnett

Title The Defiant Life of Vera Figner
Author Lynne Ann Hartnett
Publisher Indiana University Press
Release Date 2014-06-06
Category History
Total Pages 346
ISBN 9780253013941
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

This engaging biography tells the dramatic story of a Russian noblewoman turned revolutionary terrorist. Born in 1852 in the last years of serfdom, Vera Figner came of age as Imperial Russian society was being rocked by the massive upheaval that culminated in the Bolshevik revolution of 1917. At first a champion of populist causes and women's higher education, Figner later became a leader of the terrorist party the People's Will and was an accomplice in the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881. Drawing on extensive archival research and careful reading of Figner's copious memoirs, Lynne Ann Hartnett reveals how Figner survived the Bolshevik revolution and Stalin's Great Purges and died a lionized revolutionary legend as the Nazis bore down on Moscow in 1942.

The Right To Have Rights by Stephanie DeGooyer

Title The Right to Have Rights
Author Stephanie DeGooyer
Publisher Verso Books
Release Date 2018-02-13
Category Political Science
Total Pages 160
ISBN 9781784787530
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Five leading thinkers on the concept of ‘rights’ in an era of rightlessness Sixty years ago, the political theorist Hannah Arendt, an exiled Jew deprived of her German citizenship, observed that before people can enjoy any of the “inalienable” Rights of Man—before there can be any specific rights to education, work, voting, and so on—there must first be such a thing as “the right to have rights.” The concept received little attention at the time, but in our age of mass deportations, Muslim bans, refugee crises, and extra-state war, the phrase has become the center of a crucial and lively debate. Here five leading thinkers from varied disciplines—including history, law, politics, and literary studies—discuss the critical basis of rights and the meaning of radical democratic politics today.

Between Two Fires by Joshua Yaffa

Title Between Two Fires
Author Joshua Yaffa
Publisher Crown
Release Date 2021-05-04
Category Business & Economics
Total Pages 384
ISBN 9781524760601
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

In this rich and novelistic tour of contemporary Russia, Joshua Yaffa introduces readers to some of the countrys most remarkable figuresfrom politicians and entrepreneurs to artists and historianswho have built their careers and constructed their identities in the shadow of the Putin system. Torn between their own ambitions and the omnipresent demands of the state, each walks an individual path of compromise. Some muster cunning and cynicism to extract all manner of benefits and privileges from those in power. Others, finding themselves to be less adept, are left broken and demoralized. What binds them together is the tangled web of dilemmas and contradictions they face. Between Two Fires chronicles the lives of a number of strivers who understand that their dreams are bestor onlyrealized through varying degrees of cooperation with the Russian government. With sensitivity and depth, Yaffa profiles the director of the countrys main television channel, an Orthodox priest at war with the church hierarchy, a Chechen humanitarian who turns a blind eye to persecutions, and many others. The result is an intimate and probing portrait of a nation that is much discussed yet little understood. By showing how citizens shape their lives around the demands of a capricious and frequently repressive stateas often by choice as under threat of forceYaffa offers urgent lessons about the true nature of modern authoritarianism.

The Brothers by Masha Gessen

Title The Brothers
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher Penguin
Release Date 2015-04-07
Category History
Total Pages 272
ISBN 9780698148703
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

National Book Award winner Masha Gessen tells an important story for our era: How the American Dream went wrong for two immigrants, and the nightmare that resulted. On April 15, 2013, two homemade bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston marathon, killing three people and wounding more than 264 others. In the ensuing manhunt, Tamerlan Tsarnaev died, and his younger brother, Dzhokhar, was captured and ultimately charged on thirty federal counts. Yet long after the bombings and the terror they sowed, after all the testimony and debate, what we still haven’t learned is why. Why did the American Dream go so wrong for two immigrants? How did such a nightmare come to pass? Acclaimed Russian-American journalist Masha Gessen is uniquely endowed with the background, access, and talents to tell the full story. An immigrant herself, who came to the Boston area with her family as a teenager, she returned to the former Soviet Union in her early twenties and covered firsthand the transformations that were wracking her homeland and its neighboring regions. It is there that the history of the Tsarnaev brothers truly begins, as descendants of ethnic Chechens deported to Central Asia in the Stalin era. Gessen follows the family in their futile attempts to make a life for themselves in one war-torn locale after another and then, as new émigrés, in the looking-glass, utterly disorienting world of Cambridge, Massachusetts. Most crucially, she reconstructs the struggle between assimilation and alienation that ensued for each of the brothers, incubating a deadly sense of mission. And she traces how such a split in identity can fuel the metamorphosis into a new breed of homegrown terrorist, with feet on American soil but sense of self elsewhere.

Blood Matters by Masha Gessen

Title Blood Matters
Author Masha Gessen
Publisher HMH
Release Date 2009-11-11
Category Science
Total Pages 336
ISBN 0547427549
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

A National Book Award winner’s personal journey through the ethical dilemmas and unsettling choices raised by the new frontier of DNA testing. Several years after Masha Gessen’s mother died of breast cancer, she discovered she too had the BRCA1 gene mutation, which predisposes women to high rates of ovarian and breast cancer. Her doctors gave her narrow options: surgical removal of her breasts and ovaries or living with the likelihood of one day developing cancer. As Gessen wrestled with her own health decisions, she sought more information about the implications of genetic testing from a variety of sources—ranging from others faced with her same dilemma to medical researchers, historians, and religious thinkers. With concerns both practical and philosophical, personal and societal, her inquiry led her across the globe, with stops in Israel, Russia, Austria, and the United States. Weaving her own story into her journalistic research, Gessen offers insight into how knowledge that was once unimaginable now shapes our lives. Blood Matters explores not only the decisions we must make in our physical and emotional health, but also the ethical choices we face when choosing spouses or having children. “Valuable reading to almost anyone facing a huge health decision, not only for the literary commiseration it offers, but also for the inspired example of medical sleuthing on one’s own behalf that it provides. Gessen keeps an inflammatory topic at room temperature, writing elegantly and without self pity.” —The New York Times Book Review

Title Foreign Pressure and the Politics of Autocratic Survival
Author Abel Escribà-Folch
Publisher OUP Oxford
Release Date 2015-09-17
Category Political Science
Total Pages 296
ISBN 9780191064036
Language English, Spanish, and French
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Book Summary:

Can coercive foreign policy destabilize autocratic regimes? Can democracy be promoted from abroad? This book examines how foreign policy tools such as aid, economic sanctions, human rights shaming and prosecutions, and military intervention influence the survival of autocratic regimes. Foreign pressure destabilizes autocracies through three mechanisms: limiting the regime's capacity to maintain support; undermining its repressive capacity; and altering the expected utility of stepping down for political elites. Foreign Pressure and the Politics of Autocratic Survival distinguishes between three types of autocracies: personalist rule, party-based regimes, and military dictatorships. These distinct institutional settings influence the dictators' strategies for surviving in power as well as the propensity with which their leaders are punished after a regime transition. Consequently, the influence of foreign pressure varies across autocratic regime types. Further, the authors show that when foreign coercion destabilizes an autocracy, this does not always lead to democratic regime change because different regimes breakdown in distinct ways. While democratization is often equated with the demise of autocratic rule, it is just one possible outcome after an autocratic regime collapses. Many times, instead of democratization, externally-induced regime collapse means that a new dictatorship replaces the old one. This theory is tested against an extensive analysis of all dictatorships since 1946, and historical cases which trace the causal process in instances where foreign policy tools helped oust dictatorships. Oxford Studies in Democratization is a series for scholars and students of comparative politics and related disciplines. Volumes concentrate on the comparative study of the democratization process that accompanied the decline and termination of the cold war. The geographical focus of the series is primarily Latin America, the Caribbean, Southern and Eastern Europe, and relevant experiences in Africa and Asia. The series editor is Laurence Whitehead, Senior Research Fellow, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.

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