This engagingly written short history of Russia provides readers with a clear understanding of Russia's long and complex history through the events of 1998. It is the most up-to-date history available. From its beginnings, through the centuries-long reign of the tsars, the Communist revolution, the years under Stalin, the ascent of Gorbachev and the collapse of Communism, and the economic morass in which Russia finds itself today, this account will help the reader to put the tumultuous history that is Russia into perspective. Ziegler, an expert on Russia, discusses not only the political and economic aspects of each period but its social and cultural milieu as well. Ready-reference materials include a timeline of events in the history of Russia, short biographical notes on key players, and a bibliographic essay.
An introductory chapter describes the geographical and demographic features of Russia. The history of Russia begins in Kiev and moves to Moscow under the centuries-long reign of the tsars, who built a great empire. Following unrest in the last half of the nineteenth century, the Russian Revolution of 1917 ushered in the communist state, which lasted until its collapse in 1991. Ziegler provides a readable and accessible analysis of each period of Russian history—through the Yeltsin era—which will help students and interested readers to understand the long and complex history of this fascinating and troubled country.