From perestroika to rainbow revolutions
Twenty-five years after Gorbachev came to power and two decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the questions that were behind the reform efforts at the start of Perestroika are still relevant: how to modernise the economy, and how to recreate a basis for political legitimacy? The wave of 'Colour Revolutions' that precipitated regime change in Eastern Europe, starting in Serbia, and later in Georgia, Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan, were carried out in the name of democratic legitimacy, and in order to fight corruption. The current debate in Moscow under the presidency of Dmitry Medvedev revolves around the same idea: what is the way forward for Russia's modernisation, economically and politically? This volume brings together six experts on East Europe and the former Soviet Union to compare and evaluate the evolution of ideas behind Gorbachev's reforms, Yeltsin's transition, and the more recent wave of the Colour Revolutions. It does not propose a coherent regard to these historic events, but rather dispersed discussion from various perspectives tracing the contradictory development of ideas of reform, the transformation of the notion of revolution, on the role of civil society, and individual chapters from the four cases of Colour Revolutions. Contributors: Catherine Samary, Jean-Arnault Derens, Ghia Nodia, Dominique Arel, Anara Tabyshalieva.