Engaging the Russian soul opens up a treasure trove of cultural experiences that will enrich the life of anyone. Political scientist Pat Willerton encourages us to set aside stereotypes and assumptions to accurately encounter a great people. Glimpsing Russians' struggles and achievements yields deep human insights with universal relevance.
Since first visiting Russia in 1982, John P. (Pat) Willerton's professional life has been focused on understanding Russian politics and the Russian society. An associate professor of Political Science in the School of Government and Public Policy at the University of Arizona, Tucson, he is a popular and award-winning teacher as well as the author of a book and roughly fifty articles and chapters on Russian politics. The first American to conduct a live, across-the Soviet Union, call-in radio discussion (Radio Youth) during the Gorbachev reform period, he is a frequent traveler to Russia.
Willerton never experienced Russia as an "evil empire," even granting the challenges of living and working in the authoritarian Soviet political setting. Energized all of his life by Russia's complex history, rich culture, and intriguing politics, he has a passion for breaking down political-cultural divides and making Russia and its people accessible to those who live outside its borders. He has engaged individuals and audiences on 'matters Russian' throughout the U.S. and in more than two dozen countries. Pat Willerton's "glass half full" assessment of Russia's 21st century political and socioeconomic prospects leaves him even more enthusiastic about sharing his experience and ideas with others.
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