Chapter

The Russian Experience: Theoretical Interpretations

Vladimir Mau and Irina Starodubrovskaya

in The Challenge of Revolution

Published in print February 2001 | ISBN: 9780199241507
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599835 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199241503.003.0011
 The Russian Experience: Theoretical Interpretations

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This chapter speculates on how the theory of revolution might develop further, in the light of the experiences of post‐communist Russia. This means regarding the Russian example, not as a case study of the theoretical model, but as the occasion for a revision of that model. If it emerges that revolution is not solely a phenomenon of pre‐industrial, underdeveloped countries, then the features peculiar to such countries (such as low levels of literacy and general culture) cannot be regarded as universal features of revolutionary change in a theory of revolution. The most important problem in this regard is the place of violence as a necessary element of revolution, which has now come into serious question. Other theoretical issues involve spontaneity of action, the role of mass movements, and changes in concepts of property rights.

Keywords: mass movements; property rights; Russia; spontaneity; theory of revolution; violence

Chapter.  8237 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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