Russia Victory Day Parade Geovien So/ZumaPress

Totalitarianism 2.0

The political theorist Hannah Arendt once wrote that, under totalitarian regimes, the state is the only force that shapes the condition of society. Russia under President Vladimir Putin may not be there yet, but it certainly is moving in that direction.

MOSCOW – In his 1970 treatise Exit, Voice, and Loyalty, Albert Hirschman considered the three options that people have for responding to dissatisfaction with organizations, firms, and states: they can leave, demand change, or concede. In the 45 years since the publication of his book, Hirschman’s framework has been usefully applied in an extremely broad array of contexts. Likewise, using it to understand current Russian politics yields important insights.