Misunderstanding Russia: Russian Foreign Policy and the West

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9781472417893: Misunderstanding Russia: Russian Foreign Policy and the West
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Well argued and balanced, Leichtova provides an alternative and more constructive understanding of what drives Russian foreign policy. The book is based on the concepts of constructivism and orientalism in international relations to analyse the policies of the Russian Federation. This book highlights that Russian foreign policy is a complex phenomenon constructed from internal as well as external developments, perceptions and expectations. At the same time, it also highlights that Western states are the most significant Other in construction of the Russian foreign policy and even Russian identity and, at the same time, actively create an 'image of Russia' in international politics which is widely based on their own Western assumptions about the country. The author introduces the reader to an alternate portrayal of relations between Russia and the West which all analysts should take into consideration before drawing conclusions.

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Review:

'Current academic thought on the foreign policy of Russia, as well as the common understanding of the Kremlin's behaviour in international relations, is still dominated by realist or neo-realist IR scholars. This book importantly contributes to the perception of 'the Russian phenomena' as it ambitiously adds new dimensions to the understanding of modern Russian foreign policy - a policy which cannot be reduced to the saying 'Gde neft i gaz, tam pravda i vlast' (Where oil and gas - there is justice and power) anymore.'Rok Zupan?i?, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia

About the Author:

Magda Leichtova is Senior Research Fellow and Lecturer at the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of West Bohemia in Pilsen, Czech Republic. Her research focuses on the Russian transformation, Russian foreign policy and International Relations theories. She was the Project Leader for the ESF grant on modernizing teaching methods and the Principal Investigator in several research projects. She has been Deputy Head of Department since 2011.

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