Today Russia and human rights are both high on the international agenda. Since Putin returned to the presidency in 2012, domestic developments-from the prosecution of Pussy Riot to the release of Khodorkovsky and Russia's global role, especially in relation to Ukraine, have captured the attention of the world. The role of human rights activism inside Russia is, therefore, coming under ever greater international scrutiny. Since 1991, when the Russian Federation became an independent state, hundreds of organizations have been created to champion human rights causes, with varying strategies, and successes. The response of the authorities has ranged from being supportive, or indifferent, to openly hostile. Based on archival research and practical experience working in the community, Mark McAuley provides a clear and comprehensive analysis of the progress made by human rights organizations in Russia-and the challenges which will confront them in the future.
Mary McAuley is an Associate of the International Centre for Prison Studies and a member of the International Advisory Committee for the website, Rights in Russia. Between 1995 and 2002 she headed the Ford Foundation's Moscow Office, with particular responsibility for the human rights and legal reform programme. Previously she pursued an academic career, including posts at York, Essex, Wisconsin Madison, Berkeley, and St Hilda's College, Oxford. She is the author of Children in Custody: Anglo-Russian Perspectives and Russia's Politics of Uncertainty and Soviet Politics 1917-1991.