The lives of wealthy people have long held an allure to many, but the lives of wealthy Russians pose a particular fascination. Having achieved their riches over the course of a single generation, the top 0.1 percent of Russian society have become known for ostentatious lifestyles and tastes. Nevertheless, I argue in this book that
Elisabeth Schimpfössl’s Rich Russians: From Oligarchs to Bourgeoisie is a nuanced and thoughtful account of how Russia’s top 0.1 percent understands and justifies its extreme privilege. The book draws on a trove of rich qualitative data that includes biographic narrative interviews with eighty wealthy Russians, ethnographic observations, media coverage, and expert interviews.