«Особый путь»? Модернизационный взгляд на историю новой России
This article is an analytical review of the book “The Russian Path: Ideas, Interests, Institutions, Illusions” by Dmitry Travin, Vladimir Gel'man and Andrei Zaostrovtsev issued by European University at Saint Petersburg Press. Its focus is on breakthroughs and failures of the Russian modernization over the past few decades. Authors use their own approach to the analysis of political and economic transformation processes based on four ‘I’s – Ideas, Interests, Institutions and Illusions. We consistently and carefully examine all these interconnected elements in the review and show their connection to the character of reforms in post-Soviet Russia. We also describe some institutional foundations of economic and political development of modern Russia declared by the authors and delineate how these changes were implemented in forms of ‘technocratic’ policy reforms. Finally, we make some conclusions on the political and economic prospects of Russia. Thus, nine chapters of the study draw a versatile picture of last thirty years – since ‘perestroika’ and collapse of the USSR until contemporary ‘post-Crimean’ political regime. Some limitations of the book reviewed are also outlined in the conclusion. Particularly, its disciplinary isolation in political science and economics, and persisting ideological bias of the authors. The publication interesting for its universalistic view on the issues discussed recommended not only to political scientists, economists or sociologists but also to a wide readership.