Call Boomerang Books 1300 36 33 32

Get Latest Book News + FREE Shipping. Subscribe to the Boomerang Books Bulletin eNewsletter right now!

Description - Russia in Search of Itself by James H. Billington

In the turbulent decade since the collapse of the Soviet Union, conditions have worsened considerably for many Russians, and a wide-ranging debate has raged over the nature and destiny of their country. In Russia in Search of Itself, James H. Billington, the Librarian of Congress and a noted expert on Russia, examines the efforts of a proud but troubled nation to find a post-Soviet identity. The agenda has not been controlled from the top-down and center-out as in Russia's past. Nor has it been set by any intellectual giant such as Sakharov or Solzhenitsyn. Billington describes the contentious discussion occurring all over Russia and across the political spectrum. He finds conflicts raging among individuals as much as between organized groups and finds a deep underlying tension between the Russians' attempts to legitimize their new, nominally democratic identity, and their efforts to craft a new version of their old authoritarian tradition. After showing how the problem of Russian identity was framed in the past, Billington asks whether Russians will now look more to the West for a place in the common European home, or to the East for a new, Eurasian identity. Billington sees three elements shaping Russian culture: Orthodox Christianity; a special feeling for nature; and an intermittent, sometimes excessive passion for imported innovation. Out of this mix, he suggests, Russia must find its own moral anchor for its venture into democracy if it is to avoid falling back on a negative and authoritarian nationalism in order to recreate some sense of common purpose in society. The prospects for world peace in the twenty-first century depend in large measure on the way Russians decide to define themselves in the next few years. Drawing on his vast knowledge of Russian history, his frequent visits to Russia in the past decade, and his longstanding relationships with Russians from many different regions and segments of society, Billington provides an authoritative exploration of one of the world's most pressing issues.

Buy Russia in Search of Itself by James H. Billington from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.

Book Details

ISBN: 9780801879760
ISBN-10: 0801879760
Format: Hardback
(216mm x 140mm x 23mm)
Pages: 256
Imprint: Woodrow Wilson Center Press
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publish Date: 22-Apr-2004
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions - Russia in Search of Itself by James H. Billington

Book Reviews - Russia in Search of Itself by James H. Billington

» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about Russia in Search of Itself book by James H. Billington and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a Boomerang Books Account Holder - it's free to sign up and there are great benefits!)

Write Review

Author Biography - James H. Billington

James H. Billington has been the Librarian of Congress since 1987. The originator and guiding force of two major Russian-American bipartisan initiatives in Congress in the 1990s-Meeting of the Frontiers, a bilingual, online educational library; and the Open World Program, which has brought more than 7,500 emerging young Russian leaders to America-he also founded the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies in 1974 as director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. A foreign member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, he is the author of five books on Russia, including, most recently, Russia Transformed and The Face of Russia.

Books By James H. Billington

Respectfully Quoted by James H. Billington
Paperback, January 2009
RUSSIA! by James H. Billington
Hardback, September 2005
Fire in the Minds of Men by James H. Billington
Paperback, September 1998
Icon and the Axe by James H. Billington
Paperback, December 1970