In This Review

Against The Grain: An Autobiography
Against The Grain: An Autobiography
By Boris Yeltsin
Summit, 1990, 263 pp

If all Soviet politicians were as outspoken as Yeltsin we would have no further need of Kremlinology. His autobiography, which intersperses vignettes of his 1989 election campaign with chapters on his past career, contains a strident defense of his own course over the past few years and a condemnation of not only the apparatchiks and hard-liners but also Gorbachev, for inconsistency, timidity and half-measures. One can see why Yeltsin, with his bluntness, posturing and admittedly "difficult character," has been such an annoyance to the present leadership, bound by the limits of practical politics and intractable problems. But with the quickening pace of change and his proven popularity, Yeltsin cannot be ignored.