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Society vs the elite: Belarusian post-Soviet experiences

After the collapse of the USSR, opposition groups in the republics found themselves unprepared for the new political and economic reality of independence. The anti-Soviet elites were expected to present a concrete socio-economic programme for the country. This is despite the fact that the group was deprived of earlier political or administrative experience. Its political capital was only limited to a vision of nation-building.

More than anything else, revolutions and social resistance movements in post-Soviet states show the large disconnect between authorities and society. They reflect differences in perceptions of reality as they are experienced by globalising societies and post-Soviet leaders. This disconnect can be explained by the fact that political elites, as well as some of the intellectual elite, are simply out of touch with a civil society that is now made up of a young generation of digital natives. Clearly, they do not understand this generation’s cultural needs or the global technological change that has taken place.
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December 1, 2021 - Anton Saifullayeu Maxim Rust - issue 6 2021Magazine

Anti-Lukashenka demonstration in Minsk in September 2020. The events of 2020 showed that a large generational change has taken place within the Belarusian society. Photo: Troshina / Shutterstock

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