Beyond Geopolitics: Russian Soft Power, Conservatism, and Biopolitics

In: Russian Politics
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  • 1 University of Tartu

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This article offers a new approach to Russian foreign policy under Putin’s presidency as shifting from its ‘soft power’ model to what might be characterized through the prism of biopower. The author discusses the various meanings attached to the concept of attraction, and scrutinises the biopolitical turn in Russia as a domestic phenomenon and as a key element of Russia’s power projection abroad. It is argued that biopolitics as a power instrument can play different roles – it can be a tool to construct Russian national (and simultaneously imperial) identity and to distinguish Russia from the West, and channel for communication with conservative forces across the globe.

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