Sometime in the middle of the 19th century, Russia entered a phase of internal crisis that in would culminate in revolution. Its causes were not so much economic or social as political and cultural. Ill-equipped and poorly led, Russian armies suffered catastrophic losses in campaign after campaign against German armies. The war made revolution inevitable in two ways:
The Russian Revolution Late tsarist Russia Sometime in the middle of the 19th century, Russia entered a phase of internal crisis that in would culminate in revolution.
Its causes were not so much economic or social as political and cultural. For the sake of stability, tsarism insisted on rigid autocracy that effectively shut out the population from participation in government. At the same time, to maintain its status as a great power, it promoted industrial development and higher educationwhich were inherently dynamic.
The result was perpetual tension between government and society, especially its educated element, known as the intelligentsia. Potentially destabilizing also was the refusal of the mass of Russian peasantryliving in communes, to acknowledge the principle of private property in land.
In the late 19th century the political conflict pitted three protagonists: The tsar was absolute and unlimited in his authority, which was subject to neither constitutional restraints nor parliamentary institutions.
He ruled with the help of a bureaucratic caste, subject to no external controls and above the law, and the army, one of whose main tasks was maintaining internal order. Imperial Russia developed to a greater extent than any contemporary country a powerful and ubiquitous security police.
It was a crime to question the existing system or to organize for any purpose whatsoever without government permission. The system, which contained seeds of future totalitarianismwas nevertheless not rigidly enforced and was limited by the institution of private property.
The vast majority of Russian peasants lived in communes obshchinywhich held land in common and periodically redistributed it to member households to allow for changes in family size. The communal organization, composed of heads of households, exercised great control over members.
Communal peasants did not own their land but merely cultivated it for a period of time determined by local custom. Under these conditions they had little opportunity to develop respect for private property or any of the other qualities necessary for citizenship.
Politically they tended toward primitive anarchism. To some extent this also held true for industrial workers, some two million strong at the turn of the century, most of whom came from the village. The intelligentsia was partly liberal, partly radical, but in either case unalterably opposed to the status quo.
Having met with no response, they adopted methods of terror, which culminated in in the assassination of Emperor Alexander II. The government reacted with repressive measures that kept the revolutionaries at bay for the next two decades. In the meantime the field was left to liberal intellectuals, who in January formed the Union of Liberationa semilegal political body committed to the struggle for democracy.
The oppositional groups received their chance in —05 when Russia became involved in a war with Japan. The Union of Liberation, moving into the open, presented a program of fundamental political reforms.
On October 17 October 30, New Stylefaced with a general strikeEmperor Nicholas II issued a manifesto that promised the country a legislative parliament. The October Manifesto in effect ended the autocratic system.
The following year Russia was given a constitution. Elections took place to a representative body, the State Dumawhich was empowered to initiate and veto legislative proposals. The population received guarantees of fundamental civil liberties.
Between and Russia was administered by the greatest statesman of the late imperial era, Pyotr Stolypin.
Stolypin both ruthlessly suppressed disorders and carried out extensive reforms.
The most important of these were laws allowing peasants to withdraw from the commune and establish independent farmsteads. Stolypin hoped to create a self-reliant yeomanry to act as a stabilizing force in the countryside. He also had other social and political reforms in mind.Figes is the author of many books on Russian history, including A People’s Tragedy: The Russian Revolution (Penguin) and Revolutionary .
The following is a general overview of the history of Russia during the period of Soviet domination. For full coverage of the history of the Soviet Union, see the article Union of Soviet Socialist Republics..
The Russian Revolution. The Russian Revolution of was a major event in history that changed the heartoftexashop.com was first time in the history when toiled masses have successfully established their own rule. After revolution Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) was born, which eliminated poverty, established free medicine and highly subsidized housing, free Author: Leon Trotsky.
Trotsky's History of the Russian Revolution is a long, very complex, and extremely detailed treatment of the remarkably eventful period from February to October of Russia at the time was at war with Germany as part of an entente or three-country coalition that also included Great Britain and France/5(34).
Russian Revolution Red Flag (PBS) Part of PBS’s The People’s Century television series, this site covers the Russian Revolution and its aftermath, providing text and audio interviews, a .
The Russian Revolution and the Russian Civil War If there was any single event that led to the formation of the Soviet Union, it was the Russian Revolution of