S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) Institute for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies (러시아문화권연구소) 러시아연구 (Russian Studies) 러시아연구 Volume 24 Number 1/2 (2014)
Contentious Politics in Contemporary Russia : Protest Movement of 2011-2013
- Park, Soo-Heon
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 러시아연구소
- 러시아연구, Vol.24 No.2, pp. 487-518
- This article analyzes the recent protest movement in Russia from late 2011 to 2013 from the perspective of “contentious politics.” It evaluates the significance of the protest movement as new force in Russian politics by examining the rise and development of political protests in Russia. Then, on the basis of examining the diverse responses of the Putin regime, it tries to find the achievements and limitations of the protest movement in Russian politics. During the period from December 2011 to May 2012, the movement showed a high degree of mobilization. A large number of people actively participated in a series of protests targeting Putin and his regime, and the organization of the movement on the basis of the existing networks and the use of social media was pretty fruitful. After the protest of May 6, 2012, however, the movement began to show a certain decline with decrease in the participant size and in the degree of excitement, undergoing a demobilization process. Both the movement’s own problems such as inner division and focus on big cities and the Kremlin’s diverse policies, in particular repressive and constraining measures, contributed to this decline. A big divide between the metropolitan urbanites and the rest of Russia provided a general atmosphere unfavorable to the protest movement. The protest movement in Russia could have chances of regalvanization by making certain changes regarding its basic goal and strategies in the direction of pursuing a gradual regime change, focusing on more specific political and economic demands, and extending to the regional and local levels.