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Russia's Foreign Policy: Change and Continuity in National Identity
     

Russia's Foreign Policy: Change and Continuity in National Identity

by Andrei P. Tsygankov
 

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Now fully updated and revised, this clear and comprehensive text explores the past quarter-century of Soviet/Russian international relations, comparing foreign policy formation under Gorbachev, Yeltsin, Putin, and Medvedev. Challenging conventional views of Moscow’s foreign policy, Andrei P. Tsygankov shows that definitions of national interest depend on

Overview

Now fully updated and revised, this clear and comprehensive text explores the past quarter-century of Soviet/Russian international relations, comparing foreign policy formation under Gorbachev, Yeltsin, Putin, and Medvedev. Challenging conventional views of Moscow’s foreign policy, Andrei P. Tsygankov shows that definitions of national interest depend on visions of national identity and is rooted both in history and domestic politics. Yet the author also highlights the role of the external environment in affecting the balance of power among competing domestic groups.

Drawing on both Russian and Western sources, Tsygankov shows how Moscow’s policies have shifted under different leaders’ visions of Russia’s national interests. He gives an overview of the ideas and pressures that motivated Russian foreign policy in six different periods: the Gorbachev era of the late 1980s, the liberal “Westernizers” era under Kozyrev in the early 1990s, the relatively hardline statist policy under Primakov, the more pragmatic statist course under Putin, the assertive policy of the late Putin era, and the return to pragmatic cooperation under Medvedev. Evaluating the successes and failures of Russia’s foreign policies, Tsygankov explains its many turns as Russia’s identity and interaction with the West have evolved. The book concludes with reflections on the emergence of the post-Western world and the challenges it presents to Russia’s enduring quest for great-power status along with its desire for a special relationship with Western nations.

Editorial Reviews

Russian Review
PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION
[A] well-documented summary of the main directions of Russia's foreign policy from the Gorbachev period through the fifth year of Putin's presidency.
CHOICE
Tsygankov provides an accessible, invaluable contribution to the teaching and analysis of Russia's post–Cold War foreign policy. This relatively short book aims to provide both a historic overview and a theoretic framework for analyzing the formation and conceptualization of Russia's national interest, with particular emphasis on Russia's historic and evolving relationship with the West. The book contains a chronology of Russian foreign policy from 1985 to the present, and relies on many original Russian-language sources. The work is divided into eight chapters, with a historic overview, a basic introduction to international relations theory and its implications for understanding Russian foreign policy, as well as chapters on Gorbachev's new thinking, Russia as great-power balancer, Russia as great-power pragmatist, and Russia as an assertive great power. It concludes by analyzing prospects for change and continuity in Russian foreign policy. Recommended.
Seer
PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION A very coherent analysis. . . . There are few studies that so convincingly demonstrate how Russia's foreign policy has been consistently determined in large part by Moscow's relationship and attitudes towards the 'West'. . . . An excellent book.
The Russian Review
Andrei Tsygankov has written a relatively brief and well-documented summary of the main directions of Russia's foreign policy from the Gorbachev period through the fifth year of Putin's presidency.
Choice
Tsygankov (San Francisco State Univ.) provides an accessible, invaluable contribution to the teaching and analysis of Russia's post–Cold War foreign policy. This relatively short book aims to provide both a historic overview and a theoretic framework for analyzing the formation and conceptualization of Russia's national interest, with particular emphasis on Russia's historic and evolving relationship with the West. The book contains a chronology of Russian foreign policy from 1985 to the present, and relies on many original Russian-language sources. The work is divided into eight chapters, with a historic overview, a basic introduction to international relations theory and its implications for understanding Russian foreign policy, as well as chapters on Gorbachev's new thinking, Russia as great-power balancer, Russia as great-power pragmatist, and Russia as an assertive great power. It concludes by analyzing prospects for change and continuity in Russian foreign policy. Recommended.
Andrzej Korbonski
One of the most exciting younger scholars dealing with post-communist Russia's foreign policy, Andrei Tsygankov is uniquely qualified to explain some of the lesser-known aspects of Russian politics. His concern for students and his willingness to clarify the complexities of policy formation shine through in a book that will be required reading for all those interested in Russia's international behavior.
Tina Mavrikos-Adamou
A very accessible text for both instructors and students.
January 2009 Seer
A very coherent analysis. . . . There are few studies that so convincingly demonstrate how Russia's foreign policy has been consistently determined in large part by Moscow's relationship and attitudes towards the 'West'. . . . An excellent book.
Theodore Hopf
Simply the best undergraduate textbook on contemporary Russian foreign policy available today.
Richard Sakwa
Tsygankov is one of the world’s leading analysts of the complexities of Russian foreign policy, and in this volume he makes available, in a concise and easily accessible format, his knowledge distilled from years of study of the subject. He steers a sophisticated path between pro-Western liberal views and various anti-Western Russian nationalist mythologies to provide a convincing and coherent study of the relationship between national identity and foreign policy. A must-read for all serious students of Russian foreign policy and of the country’s place in the world.
George Breslauer
This book is based on a profound understanding of how Russian policymakers view the world and the impact of those views on their foreign-policy behavior. It is a must read for scholars, students, and the educated citizenry.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442220010
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
02/16/2013
Edition description:
Third Edition
Pages:
308
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Andrei P. Tsygankov is professor of international relations and political science at San Francisco State University.

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