Brookings Institution senior fellows Fiona Hill and Clifford G. Gaddy paint a nuanced portrait of the enigmatic Russian leader once described as the “man without a face.” As US foreign policy experts, they go beyond the clichés in other Putin biographies to craft a more sophisticated view of what motivates him. They describe Putin’s past and his KGB career, and explore the way he developed his aggressive concepts of capitalism, foreign policy and internal security. With their painstaking research, political expertise and dispassionate style, Hill and Gaddy reveal a complex, cunning and sometimes contradictory man who demands to be understood on his own terms.
In this summary, you will learn
- What six identities shape Vladimir Putin’s worldview,
- How Putin deploys these identities to govern at home and engage abroad, and
- How Putin perceives the West.
About the Authors
Fiona Hill is director of the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution, where she is the Stephen and Barbara Friedman Senior Fellow in Foreign Policy. Clifford G. Gaddy is a senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program.