This is a blog for use in both of my HIS 241 and HIS 242 Russian history survey courses at Northern Virginia Community College.

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30 September 2015

Does Putin Have a Philosopher, or Does He Really Need One?

Anton Barbashin and Hannah Thoburn, Putin's Philosopher: Ivan Ilyin and the Ideology of Moscow's Rule (Foreign Affairs, 20 September 2015)

The mysterious name of the semi-literate, semi-rational, semi-intellectual, mysterious, Russia emigre, Ivan Ilyin (1883-1954)keeps circulating these days in connection with Putin's ideas and behaviors, and scholars are looking for the direct, ideological connections between the two with the hope that perhaps Ilyin's writings provide a rational explanation for Putin's ideas.

Reminds me a lot of the effort to figure out a rational definition of fascism from the readings of so-called fascist thinkers, but it's an effort in futility.

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