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Fortress Russia


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Table of Contents

  • Contents
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: Building 'Fortress Russia'
  • Chapter 2: The Spectres of conspiracy mythmaking
  • Chapter 3: In Search of the 'agents of perestroika'
  • Chapter 4: Sovereign democracy and its enemies
  • Chapter 5: Battling against 'foreign agents'
  • Chapter 6: Shadows of the colour revolution
  • Chapter 7: The War has begun
  • Conclusion

About the Author

Ilya Yablokov is a Teaching Fellow in Russian Studies at the University of Leeds.


'Fortress Russia is essential reading for anyone in the USA and Western Europe who wants a greater understanding of how Russia views the world. Yablokov provides key insights into the popular politics within Putin's Russia, much of it framed by conspiracy theories, at a time of rising populism and fearful nationalism around the world and much of which is keyed to conspiracies surrounding Putin himself. The book helps to reveal the dangerous hall of mirrors in which we live.'
Mark Fenster, author of Conspiracy Theories: Secrecy and Power in American Culture and The Transparency Fix.

'Ilya Yablokov takes us on a journey through the myriad conspiracy theories that flourish in post-Soviet political culture. The notion of a "subversive agency" is indeed a critical explanatory element for Russian society that gives sense to the profound and violent changes of the last three decades and has been opportunely instrumentalized by the Russian authorities to consolidate their legitimacy. Fortress Russia is a must-read for all those who wish to understand contemporary Russia and its perception of the world.'
Marlene Laruelle, The George Washington University

"Fortress Russia offers important insight into the origins, functions, and nature of Russian conspiracy theories, emphasizing continuities in their development since the Imperial period. It is sure to be a useful resource in a wide variety of subfields within Russian and East European Studies, while also offering generalizable insights that expand its relevance to historians, political scientists, and scholars of global cultural history."
The Russian Review

'Yablokov offers a convincing model of the function of conspiracy in post-Soviet Russia.'
East-West Review

"I certainly recommend Fortress Russia, particularly because of its contribution to the study of the toxic love affair between populist politics and conspiracy theories in authoritarian contexts... In a year that has catapulted QAnon to the very top of the trash can of history, the value of Yablokov's book has risen even more."
Eurasian Geography and Economics

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