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perestroika(pər`ĕstroy`kə), Soviet economic and social policy of the late 1980s. Perestroika [restructuring] was the term attached to the attempts (1985–91) by Mikhail GorbachevGorbachev, Mikhail Sergeyevich
, 1931–, Soviet political leader. Born in the agricultural region of Stavropol, Gorbachev studied law at Moscow State Univ., where in 1953 he married a philosophy student, Raisa Maksimovna Titorenko (1932?–99).
..... Click the link for more information. to transform the stagnant, inefficient command economy of the Soviet Union into a decentralized market-oriented economy. Industrial managers and local government and party officials were granted greater autonomy, and open elections were introduced in an attempt to democratize the Communist party organization. By 1991, perestroika was on the wane, and after the failed August CoupAugust Coup,
attempted coup (Aug. 18–22, 1991) against Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev. On the eve of the signing ceremony for a new union treaty for the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, members of the Politburo and the heads of the Soviet military and security
..... Click the link for more information. of 1991 was eclipsed by the collapse of the Soviet Union, the establishment of the Russian Federation, and other dramatic political, legal, and economic changes.
See M. Gorbachev, Perestroika (1988); E. A. Hewett and V. H. Winston, ed., Milestones in Glasnost and Perestroyka (1991).