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From the Publisher"Many scholars, journalists, and political leaders have discussed the Stolypin agrarian reforms (1906-1914), the most ambitious change introduced in the Russian Empire in the four and a half decades preceding the Revolution of 1917, but no one has focused, as does Williams, on the intriguing question of whether an autocratic regime can unintentionally undertake measures that promote liberal democracy. Williams's work, based on thorough research and judicious analysis, can be read as history or as a case study of a critical question that has relevance for much of the developing world at the present time. Interestingly written and mercifully free of jargon, this excellent book should attract a wide readership."
—Abraham Ascher, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Graduate Center, City University of New York
"Williams probes the obstacle course that a true reformer like Stolypin must run in trying to establish the property rights essential to the rule of law and liberal democracy."
—Hon. Jack Kemp, Founder and chairman of Kemp Partners, former vice presidential candidate, Secretary of HUD, and congressman
"Stephen F. Williams's book provides an authoritative account of the last important reform undertaken by the tsarist government prior to the Revolution. It is thoroughly researched and capably analyzed, thus providing the latest word on the subject."
—Richard Pipes, Baird Professor of History Emeritus, Harvard University
"Fascinating, scholarly, illuminating. Williams tells a truly remarkable tale-one that has considerable interest in itself and that is also full of implications for the institution of private property in general."
—Cass Sunstein, The Karl N. Llewellyn Distinguished Service Professor of Jurisprudence, University of Chicago Law School