This article seeks to understand the role of civil society organizations (CSO) in contemporary Russian society. Rather than looking narrowly at advocacy groups, the investigation focuses on less-studied socially oriented organizations, including more recently established CSOs as well as the so-called Soviet-type voluntary organizations, which have been almost completely neglected by Western scholarship on Russian civil society. In contrast to the argument that Russia’s socially oriented CSOs are apolitical – an argument often made in Western scholarship on Russian civil society – the research found that organizations from both categories – the old Soviet-type and the more recent post-Soviet – were engaged in both political advocacy work and service provision, although they were engaged in political and social action to varying extents.


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pp. 199-224
Launched on MUSE
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