End of the USSR
In the late 1980s the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, sought to reform the Union, introducing the policies of glasnost and perestroika in an attempt to end the period of economic stagnation and democratize the government. However, this led to the rise of strong nationalist and separatist movements. Central authorities initiated a referendum, boycotted by the Baltic republics and
Georgia, which resulted in the majority of participating citizens voting in favour of preserving the Union as a renewed federation. In August 1991, a coup d'état was attempted by hardliners against Gorbachev, with the intention of reversing his policies. The coup failed, with Russian President Boris Yeltsin playing a high-profile role in facing down the coup, resulting in the banning of the Communist Party. On 25 December 1991, Gorbachev resigned and the remaining 12 constituent republics emerged from the dissolution of the Soviet Union as independent post-Soviet states. The Russian Federation, the successor state of the Russian SFSR, assumed the Soviet Union's rights and obligations and is recognised as its continued legal personality.
2. Long term factors.
3. A systemic approach: the system was not open to reform.
4. Circumstantial factors and political transformation. The dissolution of the Soviet Union.
5. The Rise of Yeltsin. Russian politics as opposed to Soviet politics.