Anna Arutunyan explains the Putin mystique


On Nov. 5 journalist and author Anna Arutunyan joined Russia expert and Clinical Professor of Global Affairs at the NYU’s Center for Global Affairs Mark Galeotti in conversation for an event at the School of Professional Studies. The event, hosted in collaboration with the Jordan Center, focused on the figure of president Vladimir Putin and was the second installment of Revisiting Russia, a three-part series of talks aimed at discussing Russia’s future and its place in the world.

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Why the international community shouldn’t ignore the Crimean Tatars


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Early in 2014 the Russian annexation of Crimea caused international uproar. Subsequently, things went quiet. Today, the media are paying attention again, as they reveal how local Russian authorities are targeting the Crimean Tatars, one of the peninsula’s main ethnic minority groups, through actions aimed at restricting their autonomy. In a display of hypocrisy and shortsightedness, Western leaders remain silent.

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Love, Peace, and Developed Socialism: A Talk by Juliane Fürst


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The first wave of hippies was indeed a community largely made up of urban and privileged children of elites, who were better connected to the West and therefore had more potential to kick start a hippie movement. Among them was even Joseph Stalin’s son, Vasily, as well as the children of the Mikoyan family. “One can see how in one family, the roads divide.”

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The media game: Putting on the Cold War goggles


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As the tension between Russia and the West turns into a deeper rift in the wake of the Ukrainian crisis, many have been tempted to declare the beginning of a new Cold War. The English-language media – both Western and Russian – has taken the approach a step further. Flicking through the pages of newspapers or scrolling down a webpage, the tendency towards interpreting current events as a permanent confrontation between Russia and the West is evident: Journalists have put on their Cold War goggles and seem set on keeping them on.

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Experts discuss Russian law and its trajectories


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On October 16, 2014, the Jordan Center welcomed several scholars to participate in a panel, entitled Russia’s Legal Trajectories: Law in Action and Question, 1830 to 2014. In her introductory remarks, Professor of History at NYU Jane Burbank stated that there are many perplexing ideas about law and Russia. Some commentators think that the rule of law is incompatible with autocratic or Communist governments; for them Russian law is an oxymoron. Yet, Burbank remarked, law has been important to government in Russia for many centuries. In addition, for the last 10 year or so many scholars have been rigorously scrutinizing the subject. This panel was meant to give its audience “a taste of new legal history” in four different presentations about law from the early 19th century, through the legal reforms of 1864, to the current day.

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Snowden in Moscow: The Interview


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“I’ve been recognized every now and then. It’s always in computer stores. It’s something like brain associations, because I’ll be in the grocery store and nobody will recognize me. Even in my glasses, looking exactly like my picture, nobody will recognize me. But I could be totally clean-shaven, hat on, looking nothing like myself in a computer store, and they’re like, “Snowden?!””

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Oleg Kharkhordin speaks on rules of order in Russian society


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On October 15, 2014, the Jordan Center welcomed Oleg Kharkhordin with a lecture entitled “A Point of Order! The Troubled Travels of Robert’s Rules of Order from America to Russia, or How Russians Tried to Invent Order Themselves.” Oleg Kharkhordin is a political sociologist and the the Rector of the European University of St. Petersburg, which, as Director Yanni Kotsonis stressed in his introduction, is an institution with a remarkably high concentration of brain power and quality.

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Putin’s Birthday: What to Get for the Man Who’s Grabbed Everything?


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“In an amazing fashion, the events of ancient tales of the mythological hero, Heracles, can be adapted to here and now, when the three-headed Cerberus evokes USA, when the defeat of the Stymphalian birds is putting the stop to aerial bombing in Syria, and the cleaning of the Augean stables is the fight against corruption.”

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Stephen Norris discusses Boris Efimov and Soviet cartoons


On October 10, 2014, the Jordan Center welcomed Stephen Norris, a professor of history at the Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies at Miami University of Ohio, to speak about his book project, entitled “Communist Cartoonist: Boris Efimov.” Norris’s talk was second in the Jordan Center’s Colloquium Series, which, as Director Yanni Kotsonis explained, encourages scholars to present their ongoing projects in order to receive feedback and comments from the audience.

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Mark Galeotti discusses trajectories in Putin’s Russia


Professor Mark Galeotti (left) and Jordan Center Director Yanni Kotsonis (right) discuss Russia under Putin. Source: Ilaria Parogni

On Sept. 29 the NYU School of Professional Studies Center for Global Affairs and the Jordan Center teamed up to present the first installment of Revisiting Russia, a special series of three conversations on contemporary Russia co-sponsored by the two institutions. The first event, titled “Where Is Putin Leading Russia?,” saw leading Russian affairs expert Mark Galeotti take center stage for a discussion of the factors shaping the politics of Vladimir Putin and the future of the country. Professor Yanni Kotsonis, Director of the Jordan Center, moderated the talk, which is part of the program of celebrations marking the 10th anniversary of the Center for Global Affairs.

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Stephen Kotkin on Stalin: Geopolitics, Ideas, Power


Professor Stephen Kotkin during his talk on Stalin at NYU's Jurow Hall. Source: Ilaria Parogni

Sept. 26, 2014, marked the first of the Distinguished Lecture series at the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia. As director Yanni Kotsonis pointed out, the lectures as well as the Center itself are meant to “protect conversations about Russia. If one wants to speak of Russia these days, you need protection; if one wants to speak against, you also need protection.” He added: “The only criterion here is intelligence.”

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Noncompetitive elections and dissent: Evidence from the USSR


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Sept. 12 marked the opening of the Jordan Center’s Fall 2014 Colloquium Series with a presentation by Arturas Rozenas, Assistant Professor at the NYU Department of Politics, whose current research focuses on authoritarian states, electoral competitions and statistical methodology. Rozenas presented a paper on the nature of Soviet elections, which he had written several years ago and currently wishes to revive with newly gathered data from the KGB and Communist Party archives in Lithuania.

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Sex Tips from the Russian GQ Magazine


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It’s tempting to posit that the editors are actually aliens who learned about Earth culture entirely from binge-watching Mad Men (with the occasional break for Animal House and Porky’s).

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