Yeltsinism is a term sometimes used to denote the political and economic policies of Boris Yeltsin
Boris Yeltsin
Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin was the first President of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999.Originally a supporter of Mikhail Gorbachev, Yeltsin emerged under the perestroika reforms as one of Gorbachev's most powerful political opponents. On 29 May 1990 he was elected the chairman of...

, after he became the effective ruler of Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 following the dissolution of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 in December 1991. The term "Yeltsinism" is most often used with a negative connotation. His critics blame him for the collapse of the USSR, which was called "The geopolitical catastrophe of the century", by Russian President Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin served as the second President of the Russian Federation and is the current Prime Minister of Russia, as well as chairman of United Russia and Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Union of Russia and Belarus. He became acting President on 31 December 1999, when...

. Others imply that Yeltsinism involves the outward appearance of democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

, while actually concentrating power in a form of authoritarianism
Authoritarianism is a form of social organization characterized by submission to authority. It is usually opposed to individualism and democracy...

 and consider the current political system in Russia (often called Putinism
Putinism is the ideology, priorities, and policies of the system of government practiced by Russian politician Vladimir Putin...

) as "continuation and rejection of Yeltsinism". Mohamed Sid-Ahmed, for example, described it as "observing the minimum requirements necessary to appease western sensibilities and stave off accusations of openly violating the rules of democracy in terms of form, while actually violating those rules in terms of substance."

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