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Laruelle, Marlene. “The Izborsky Club, or the New Conservative Avant‐Garde in Russia.” The Russian Review 75, no. 4 (2016): 626-644.


Launched at the end of 2012, the Izborsky Club stands as a symbol of the ideological hardening of Vladimir Putin’s third presidential mandate. This paper argues that for the first time, a large group of self‐identified nationalists or anti‐liberals has united under a single structure with the objective of influencing the authorities. The Club confirms the progressive structuring of a field of “think tanks” in Russia whose function is to occupy different ideological niches and offer a range of “products” that the authorities can sample, make official, or reject. This paper first explores the context of emergence of the Club, and maps its main figures, and their connections to higher decision‐making circles. Second, it investigates how the Club encapsulate its main ideological precepts–a reconciliation between Red and White, the imperial debate, and the economic aspect of Russian Great‐Powerness. Third, it briefly debates the successes and failures of the Club’s positioning in Russia’s contemporary ideological landscape.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.