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Henry Hale - Brumley

Democracy, Autocracy, and Revolution in Russia and Post-Soviet Eurasia

April 6, 2021 |  12:15 - 1:15 pm  |  Zoom Webinar

On April 6, the Strauss Center hosted Dr. Henry Hale, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, for a virtual talk on democracy, autocracy, and revolution in Russia and Post-Soviet Eurasia. This webinar was part of our Brumley Speaker Series.

Dr. Hale’s talk explored how the past three decades of post-Soviet history have been a major disappointment for democracy advocates in all but a handful of cases. How can we understand democracy’s failure? The key is to grapple with certain historical legacies that predate communist rule but interacted with it to present post-Soviet societies with major challenges of political and economic development. Often facilitating the rise of strongmen like Vladimir Putin, these legacies are compatible with certain forms of democratization and render authoritarianism in countries like Russia less stable than often thought.


Henry E. Hale is Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University (GW). He is the author, among other articles and books, of Patronal Politics: Eurasian Regime Dynamics in Comparative Perspective (2015), and co-editor of the textbook Developments in Russian Politics 9 (2019). His publications have won two prizes from the American Political Science Association, and he currently serves as chair of the editorial board of Demokratizatsiya: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization. Hale directed GW’s Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies during 2009-12.

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