Book

The red mirror: Putin's leadership and Russia's insecure identity (2020)

in: Oxford scholarship online

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Abstract

What explains Putin's enduring popularity in Russia? In 'The Red Mirror', Gulnaz Sharafutdinova uses social identity theory to explain Putin's leadership. The main source of Putin's political influence, she finds, lies in how he articulates the shared collective perspective that unites many Russian citizens. Under his tenure, the Kremlin's media machine has tapped into powerful group emotions of shame and humiliation - derived from the Soviet transition in the 1990s - and has politicized national identity to transform these emotions into pride and patriotism.