1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
The Story of Russia  By  cover art

The Story of Russia

By: Orlando Figes
Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $29.37

Buy for $29.37

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

From “the great storyteller of Russian history”, a brilliantly colored account of the myths that have shaped and reshaped Russia’s identity and politics from its founding

Who were the Rus, the ancient tribe from which the Russians trace their origins? Were they Baltic Slavs, hailing from within the territory that would become Russia? Or were they Vikings from Scandinavia, who came in from the outside to organize chaotic warring groups? Russians initially embraced the former theory, following a surge in nationalist sentiment, but autocrats, including Catherine the Great, came to trumpet the latter, which supported the notion that the Russian people are incapable of self-governance. Both sides were using history to create myths, narratives of national identity that could be deployed for their own political ends.

The Story of Russia is about how the Russians defined themselves―and repeatedly reinvented such definitions along the way. Moving from Russia’s agrarian beginnings in the first millennium to subsequent periods of monarchy, totalitarianism, and perestroika, all the way up to Vladimir Putin and his use of myths of Russian history to bolster his regime, celebrated historian Orlando Figes examines the ideas that have guided the country’s actions: the need for autocracy to rule Russia’s vast land; the veneration of the “Holy Tsar” and the cult of the leader; the belief in an essentially Russian collectivist spirit; and the oscillation between Russia’s European and Eurasian character.

With beautiful writing and alluring perspectives, The Story of Russia is as much about the myths and ideologies that have shaped Russian history―about the ways the Russians have interpreted their past―as it is about the events, institutions, social groups, and leaders that have made that history. And as modern Russia retreats from Europe, this authoritative account of Russia’s past might well elucidate its future.

©2022 Orlando Figes (P)2022 Blackstone Publishing
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about The Story of Russia

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    46
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    38
  • 4 Stars
    16
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    40
  • 4 Stars
    13
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

a must-read for anyone concerned about the future

Humanity May well Prosper or perish depending on what steps are taken by Western policymakers following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. knowing your enemy is the first step in conflict resolution. this book should be required reading for American policy makers who are unfamiliar with Russia's history and it's conflicts with Europe over the past 2,000 years.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

One stop shop

Great one stop shop to help explain why Russia is the way it is today.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • A
  • 10-16-22

Pretty Good

It’s a good history of Russia, with a lot of nuances. The author’s bias comes through very clearly at the end, rather than just telling the history. The narrator does a good job, but I wish his voice was a little less gravelly and the words more enunciated, as it would be easier to understand him. Good review of Russian history.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Very good overview of Russian history

It's hard to write about 1000 years of history in one country (or multiple countries, given the reach of empire in both monarchal amd Soviet forms) but this book provides a very good overview with interesting highlights on specific periods to weave a general overview of Russian thinking about the country's nationhood and identity.

Eerie parallels emerge in earlier episodes of Russian history with the events unfolding in Ukraine today in terms of Russian military approaches and mentalities. The one difference now is the country's possession of nuclear weapons, which doesn't get much attention in the chapters on Soviet history but now clearly play a deciding role in policy options and responses to the Russian-initiated war in Ukraine

Great reading by the narrator despite some instances of misplaced stress in Russian terminology.