Between Two Fires

Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia

Joshua Yaffa
AUD $22.99
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How everyday Russians adapt to survive under Putin's rule, from The New Yorker's correspondent in Moscow.

In this penetrating exploration of contemporary Russia, Joshua Yaffa meets a variety of Russians - from politicians and entrepreneurs to artists and historians - who have built their careers and constructed their identities in the shadow of the Putin system. Torn between their own ambitions and the omnipresent demands of the state, each has found that compromise is essential for survival and success. Some extract benefits and privileges through cunning and cynicism, others less adept at navigating the system are left broken and demoralised.

With sensitivity and depth, Yaffa profiles Russians from institutions such as the Bolshoi and Channel 1, from the major cities, and from regions such as Chechnya, post-annexation Crimea, and the Urals, including an Orthodox priest at war with the church hierarchy and a Chechen humanitarian who turns a blind eye to persecutions. The result is an intimate and probing portrait of a nation much discussed but little understood. And by showing how citizens shape their lives around the demands of a capricious and repressive state, Yaffa offers urgent lessons about the nature of modern authoritarianism.

Author bio:

Joshua Yaffa is a correspondent for The New Yorker in Moscow, where he has lived for the last eight years. He has been a fellow at the New America foundation, a finalist for the Livingston Award, a visiting scholar at the Harriman Institute at Columbia University, and a grantee of the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting.

Category: Literature & literary studies
ISBN: 9781783783724
Publisher: Granta
Imprint: Granta Paperbacks
Pub Date: February 2021
Page Extent: 368
Format: Paperback - B format
Subject: Literature & literary studies