- Paperback: 328 pages
- Publisher: Columbia University Press (July 5, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0231148976
- ISBN-13: 978-0231148979
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 39 customer reviews
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#408,253 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #317 in Books > Law > Legal Theory & Systems > Non-US Legal Systems
- #331 in Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Politics & Government > Political Science > Comparative Politics
- #542 in Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Politics & Government > International & World Politics > Russian & Former Soviet Union
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Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War Paperback – July 5, 2011
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Cohen offers us a lesson, and a solution that is at once simple and of priceless value. (David A. Andelman World Policy Blog)
[George] Kennan's understanding of the Russian state... has proved to have enormous currency over time. Cohen's views should be given similar credence. (William W. Finan Jr. Current History)
Provocative and insightful. (Amy Knight New York Review of Books)
Well written and vigorously argued. (Archie Brown Russian Review)
Cohen... brings his study of Soviet and Russian political developments to the doorstep of the White House, to powerful effect. (The Nation)
An extraordinarily rich book... an absolutely vital beginning point for anyone interested in a serious study of political and foreign policy developments involving Russia. (Slavic Review)
Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives finds its stride in Cohen's ability to challenge conventional wisdom on the causes and consequences of major turning points in Soviet and post-Soviet history. (Rehanna Jones-Boutaleb Foreign Policy in Focus)
this is one of the first books I would put into the hands of someone who wanted to get a good sense of what the Soviet Union was all about. (Lars T. Lih Montreal Review)
Cohen's book is a superbly informed, astute and thought-provoking analysis of late Soviet politics and history. (Denis Kozlov Slavonic and East European Review)
Among the many strengths of Soviet Fates is not just Stephen Cohen's longtimedepth of expertise but his unrivalled storytelling ability and, perhaps above all, hisrazor-sharp insider observations based on personal exchanges, interviews, and experienceswith key actors... (Nanci Adler Journal of Modern History)
About the Author
Stephen F. Cohen is professor of Russian studies at New York University and professor of politics emeritus at Princeton University. His other books include Bukharin and the Bolshevik Revolution: A Political Biography; Rethinking the Soviet Experience; and Failed Crusade: America and the Tragedy of Post-Communist Russia.
Top customer reviews
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Cohen uses his enormous knowledge and analytical skills in this work. Unless the US changes its course towards Russia in a fundamentally new direction, we'll "all go together, when we go" in a nuclear armageddon. The policies of Clinton/Bush II/Obama has brought us there. Learn about it in this great work. Learn about the great changes and missed opportunities in the hundred years of history since the revolution - both in the Soviet/Russia trajectory and in the US/Russia relations.
It's been a 100 years since the revolution. Let's have an anniversary edition, with a new essay about the development since 2011 - and the prospects right now. Stephen F. Cohen is a master. Listen to his voice while there still is time for a change.
Cohen outlines several missed opportunities since the beginning of the Soviet Union which may have changed the course of Russian history, providing a cohesive union and government among the former republics till this day.
Further, Cohen risks severe scrutiny by academics, foreign policy experts, the media and American citizens in order to expose the truth behind a failed US foreign policy toward Russia over the last 25 years.
As with much of history it is not always what it seems. This book challenges the reader to view the long held perceptions of a Russian Cold War defeat in the context of historical fact and understand how those perceptions have skewed US foreign policy toward Russia in a way that is self-defeating to US security and interests.
Far more to Cohen's work. Cohen focuses on Nicholi Bakharin & how his ghost lives on as a lost alternatives to Stalinism and his methods of terror to modernize the Soviet Union. Bukharin continues to surface throughout Soviet/Russian history as new movements for genuine reform gain credence only to be partially buried again. This is seen through Khruchev & Garbachev era.
Cohen work is incredibly rich with insights both as an academic & personal friend of Gorbachev and Bakharin family heirs. His writing is balanced as he walks the tight rope between the distance of being an academic along with deep understanding of Russian/Soviet culture through genuine friendships with Russian/former Soviet citizens. It is hard to believe Cohen is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations. Evidently no one listens to his insights/wisdom.