2022: Stalin’s Shadow & Russian History

2022: Stalin’s Shadow and Russian History

STEPHEN KOTKIN is one of our most eminent scholars of Russian history, whose masterwork is a definitive multi-volume biography of Joseph Stalin. In this talk, he will take us not only into the world of Stalin, but into that of the most powerful and autocratic Russian leader since Stalin—Vladimir Putin. To quote Kotkin: “What we have today in Russia is not some kind of surprise. It’s not some kind of deviation from a historical pattern. Way before NATO existed—in the 19th century, Russia looked like this: it had an autocrat. It had repression. It had militarism. It had suspicion of foreigners and the West. This is a Russia that we know, and it’s not a Russia that arrived yesterday or in the 1990s. It’s not a response to the actions of the West. There are internal processes in Russia that account for where we are today.”