Writers Inspiring Change feature book review: Putin, the Russian Elite and the Future of Russia
Putin, the Russian Elite and the Future of Russia, by Alex Markman, is an excellent thesis and overview of the culture of Russia from the end of the Czarist era, through Lenin, Stalin et al, and culminating in the dictatorship under Vladimir Putin. This is a very insightful piece of work, for it presents the broader picture to the reader; why Russia, and previously, the USSR, remains a nation incapable of truly fostering a democracy, and why people like Putin, are capable of manipulating a mentality of elitism that has been ingrained into its population; and why every regime since the Leninist period, has inculcated its population with a mentality that the West is the enemy of Russia and that all its problems are caused by the West, even to this very day under the Putin propaganda machinery. The author also does a brilliant job of presenting the backstory on Ukraine, and why the Crimean crisis occurred, and how it is possible that Russia has invaded it today. If you want to get a clearer understanding of what drives the political and ideological machinery of Russia, not just Putin who is merely another in a long line of dictators which the Russian people have bowed to, then read this book. Greater understanding of the Russian dilemma helps one to navigate these troubled times.
Review by International Writers Inspiring Change
About Alex Markman
I was born in the Soviet Union, the country where people were taught grammar but had no freedom to write. I was the witness of the well-known phenomena that press is a powerful disseminator of ignorance. This was a tough environment for someone who believed that his mission in life is literature. I graduated University, economic faculty, and, after immigrating to Canada, worked many years in the field of software development in large corporations. I traveled a lot, in the vast wilderness of Russia, Canada and the US, and European megalopolises. I studied history, global social, economic and technological trends, but my passion has always been fiction writing. I hope it is good entertainment and the source of wisdom to my readers.
What prompted you to become a writer?
As far as I remember, I always wanted to tell a good story. In my childhood, when I did that, my mind was hardly able to distinguish the reality from fantasy. Perhaps it was necessary to make my story interesting and logically complete. My mother called me a “fantasizer” and often was appalled with the absurdity or intensity of my account of events. I was not a liar, although it took me years to avoid non-existing twists when I told the audience a true story. In my adolescent years I just wanted to entertain, make people laugh, feel compassion for heroes of my stories, but with passing years, when it came to serious writing, this attitude was merged with ideas of humanity, justice and respect for fellow humans. In my colorful life I got acquainted with people from all walks of life: from the very bottom of society to the very distinguished, who in some way made history. They gave me both inspiration and material for my writing.
What do your readers like about your writing?
This is a tough question. There are different opinions, from very flattering to highly negative. In both cases, expression of strong reaction to the story is a good sign that my writing touches the sensitive strings of the soul.
How do you inspire others with and through your writing?
There is an eternal fight between Good and Evil. I try to show the reader how ugly the devil is, and how beautiful is the a soul of integrity and virtue. I hope that my writing leaves a trace in my reader’s minds.
Tell us about your most recent book(s) and why you wrote it.
My latest published book, The Drama and Mockery of Fate, is a collection of short stories and novellas, some of them published before.
These stories had been inspired by real-life events. Some of them are funny and hopefully will make the reader laugh; others are tragic, revealing the drama of loss, love, and shattered dreams, so often tormenting our souls. And, of course, erotica and epicurean indulgence in sensual pleasures, which reward us occasionally for our deeds and misdeeds.