Document Type

Honors Project


Most research on the topic of center-periphery relations focuses on the center as the locus of policy. This project, on the other hand, seeks to establish an alternative understanding of the ways in which nationality has played out both as a Russian tactic to unite disparate and diverse territories, and as a mode by which some ethnic minorities in Russian-ruled spaces have been able to secure relative autonomy. The Republic of Tatarstan, located in the Volga River basin, has achieved unprecedented levels of autonomy while existing as a contingent part of the USSR, and now the Russian Federation. Comparisons have been drawn between Tatarstan and Chechnya in regards to the political, economic, and cultural autonomy they exercise on their respective territories; however, while their autonomy may be comparable, their respective relationships with the Russian central governments are not. Where does Tatarstan’s political, economic, and cultural power come from, and what effect does Tatar autonomy have on contemporary center-periphery relations in the Russian Federation?



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