1. bookVolume 12 (2016): Issue 1 (April 2016)
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
1801-3422
First Published
16 Apr 2015
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

The Construction of Crisis: The ‘internal‑identitarian’ nexus in Russian‑European relations and its significance beyond the Ukraine crisis

Published Online: 24 Jun 2016
Volume & Issue: Volume 12 (2016) - Issue 1 (April 2016)
Page range: 95 - 110
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
1801-3422
First Published
16 Apr 2015
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

Since 2012 and with Putin’s return to the presidency, Russian politics underwent a process of securitization of domestic politics. This laid the groundwork for the crisis in European-Russian relations that culminated in the ‘Ukraine crisis’ from late 2013. This article will trace the domestic determinants of Russian foreign policy choices and narratives since 2012 that help explain the political deadlock between ‘the West’ and Russia over the European Union’s ‘Eastern Partnership’. It will thereby also analyze the effects for the Russian perception of agency between the US and the EU as well as path dependencies that European Union sanctions have created. Not only Russia’s relationship with the West is at stake in this stand-off. The ‘Ukraine crisis’ has developed into a fundamental systemic crisis of the Putinite regime. Only if Putin’s ‘social contract’, which had guaranteed economic well-being in exchange for political inactivity, was to be eroded by sanctions imposed on Russia, the ‘civilizational’ narrative of Russian exclusivity would be endangered. A new social contract will be a generational task and will have to take stock of the nexus between internal determinants and identitarian foreign policy choices. It will also be the first step in recalibrating European-Russia relations.

Keywords

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