Russian Revolution

Introduction

The Russian revolution is also referred as Bolshevik revolution. There were two kinds of revolution. The first revolution happened in February when Czar abandoned his sovereignty and the provisional government was formed.

Russian revolution was significant in history of the world. During the early period of twentieth century, Russia was an enormous empire, extended from pacific to Poland. It was a territory of 165 million human populations of several languages, cultures, and religions. Governing such a huge state was complicated since the challenges in the empire cause an upheaval in 1917 that phased out the old structure away.

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Russia was shaken by two key attackers of supremacy. The Tsars of the empire were swapped by a pair of synchronized revolutionary governments, that is, socialist government and liberal government. However, after sometime, the socialist assembly grabbed power and established the initial world socialist government.

Difference over new ideologies and laws, lack of rights, and lack of representation brought tension between Czars and their opponents. The rising democratic values on the Western Europe offered a firm confrontation against Russia in order to advocate for development in the empire. Firm liberal and socialist confrontations were raised against the existing government.

Russian Revolution

Economic factors lead to Russia revolution. There was misery, exploitation, and poverty among the people. Russia was a backward empire. Prominent personality and royal family possessed huge agricultural land. People also utilized primitive devices and methods of farming that were not prolific.

The situation of peasants became worse because they paid large amount of tributes and rents to their landowner each year. This caused great dissatisfaction among farmers who were compelled to rebel against the government of czar as a way to end economic depression and social unrest[1].

Russian empire was also backward in industrial sector. It relied heavily on foreign capital. Laborers and employees were forced to endure depressed working situations. Workers got low earnings and worked for at least twelve hours in each day. Laborers had to attended work duties without medical care and the condition was severe whenever an accident took place. Workers were not given weekly holiday and trade union was perceived as an offense1.

Besides, the existing government was not committed to promote better conditions. Russian citizens experienced hardship from diseases, misery, poverty, and other social problems which were caused by terribly high levies and taxes, and overpriced land revenues[2]. These difficulties were contributed by inequity in social structures.

Majority of the Russian population were illiterate. The social structure of the empire was totally deficit in terms of public health, education, and medical relief facilities. Majority of people were poor and ignorant and also suffered from diseases and hunger. Many people were drug addicts. Moreover, the flogging system made social life more inhumane, heartbreaking, and depressing.

Political factors contributed to Russian revolution. People lacked legal means to promote their social structures. Citizens lacked media to air out their complaints. The government of Czar was repressive and ruthless. For example, non-violent demonstration led by a catholic priest, Fr. Gabon was dispersed by Czarist soldiers2. The parliament lacked power to act. Licenses were not permitted to workers, common people and women[3].

The increasing dissatisfaction expressed itself in every aspect of empire’s life. The working class became interested in Marxism and the thought penetrated Russian empire. Russian revolution happened in 1917 when Tsar was removed from power by Bolshevik and Lenin.

It was succession of activities which happened in 1971 that comprised of two distinct revolutions; one in February and the other in October[4]. Specifically, this kind of revolution was marked by political wrangling between czarist government and the opponents. The internal strife finally led the nation to civil war prior to establishment of the communist state.

Increasing Unrest

The initial major occasion of Russian revolution happened in February and was marked by chaotic situation and culmination of military and civil conflict for more than a century.

Common people caused strife against aristocrat landlords and czarist government. Patricians disliked how peasants were harshly treated. Proletariats were displeased by military let downs and food scarcity in the country[5]. For instance, the country experienced embarrassing loses in the Japanese Russian battle in 1905, and in the same year, the czarist soldiers fired upon defenseless citizens.

Common people held demonstrations, strikes, and prominent revolts in the empire. In October, czar generated the initial constitution and the parliament was formed for the nation. Nevertheless, czar trusted his divine authority which influenced him to repress the power of parliament in order to hold on much autocracy.

The First World War

In several ways, the county’s disastrous contribution in the First World War was ultimate blow to czarist administration. In the initial commitment with Germany during the Tannenberge battle, the Russian troops were defeated comprehensively, losing 120,000 victims[6]. It was a mess up situation when Russia sent unskilled and recruit armies in front of the fight with ineffective fighting equipments.

The severe war brought much suffering to Russian citizens who lacked fuel and food supply. Proletarian families also suffered when their sons were being murdered in their presence. The imperial regime and czarist government were responsible for civil strife that intense up[7].

February Revolution

In 1917 February, during the celebration of international feminine day at St. Petersburg, women held demonstration and revolted due to scarcity of food in the empire. Men also joined the riot; were encouraged by social and political activists. Every factory, enterprise and commercial businesses had stopped operation since almost every person revolted the government. Czar commanded military and police administration to intercede; nevertheless some military troops became disloyal to Czar, and in fact joined people who were revolting.

The whole empire was in strife; over 80,000 soldiers revolted against the military service, and involved in prevalent rioting and looting. Czar was faced with unachievable condition; he abandoned his power and handled his authority to Michael his brother. Nevertheless, Michael did not admit the power, only except when elected through the parliament. He eventually abandoned the post leaving the empires without a president[8].

Provisional Government

Subsequent to the resignation of Romanovs, the provisional government was created by members of the parliament that was recognized as a legal government of Russia. The government was expected to govern the empire until election could be conducted. Nevertheless, the power of the government was not absolute.

The government comprised of Petrograd Soviet organization that was made up of military and trade union personnels who exercised massive influence in the government[9]. The organization preferred socialist principles to govern the state. The empire was frenzied with political passion after centuries of colonial governance; various factions publicized different ideas which doomed that political stability was unachievable after February revolt.

The Return of Lenin

Lenin Vladimir was dedicated to take advantage of the disorganized situation of the empire. Lenin was an experience person who campaigned, worked and journeyed in the entire Europe; he stayed abroad because he fled from Russia to safeguard his life from Czarist government. Lenin was socialist and adversary of czarist government[10].

Nevertheless, when Czar was imprisoned and the empire was in strife, Lenin has an opportunity to popularize his party (Bolsheviks) to form next government. Lenin accepted to leave his working place in Swaziland, to go back to Russia through the support from the German authority.

Lenin was greatly welcomed in Russia by political personalities and Russian citizens[11]. Lenin opposed ideologies and guiding principles of the provisional government, but he united the irritable and disappointed parties. Lenin promoted the disengagement with liberal (non-despot communists) and initiated instant end of the battle. Lenin’s campaign convinced many Russian citizens who suffered from hunger and poverty[12].

Summer of 1917

Lenin carried out many attempts to call upon another revolution similar to the one that took place in February, intended to remove the provisional government from power[13]. Nevertheless, the Petrograd soviet society dispersed the coupe; the skilled soldiers overwhelm any rebel, and the members of Bolsheviks were blamed for conspiring with the Germans. Many supporters of Bolsheviks were detained whereas Lenin fled to Finland[14].

Despite the challenges, Lenin schemed and conspired to fulfill his mission. Kerensky, an affiliate of Petrograd Soviet society and provisional government, experienced agony due his political impediment. Due to tension had developed, Kerensky called upon the military support of Bolsheviks; he was afraid of kornilov, the Minster of Defense, of being a military dictator. Bolsheviks aroused into victory, triumphing majority votes in Moscow and Petrograd soviet[15]. Trotsky Leon was selected to be the president of the Head of State.

October Revolution

Lenin became conscious that it was a moment to benefit from the popularity of his party while Russians politics was undergoing constant strife and instability. Lenin strategized a coup d’etat which would remove the unsuccessful the provisional government from power to restored it with the party of Bolsheviks[16]. Lenin held a prominent gathering with 12 party leaders and convinced them that a revolution was needed.

However, Lenin got support from only ten members who accepted with intention of revolution. The coup d’etat was set on 24th October when the soldiers who supported Bolsheviks assumed strategic positions in the town such as main bridges, banks, post offices, key telegraph and telephone offices, and railroad stations[17]. The security guards who were employed by the provisional government already knew about the plot, escaped before the battle.

On October 25th, entire premises within St. Petersburg were under the power of Bolsheviks apart from the winter citadel where Kerensky and several government officials were secured. After sometime, Kerensky escaped the citadel by a vehicle and never came back to Russia. On October 26th, the citadel was captured by Lenin’s troops; it was revolution that was accomplished with a minimum of bloodshed[18].

Aftermath and Impacts

Lenin realized that his support was not complete, despite capturing the authority without much difficulty. Moreover, Lenin’s peace strategy with Germans became unpopular as it was abandoned by majority of Russian people[19]. After successful revolution, the Russian civil war occurred between whites (imperialists, nationalists, conservatives and other anti-Bolshevik supporters) and reds (communists)[20].

After the strife of bloodshed, the reds and Lenin triumphed, thus forming the Soviet Union in the year 1922 with an approximate of fifteen millions people[21]. Unfortunately, Lenin passed away in the year 1923 and he was eventually succeeded by Stalin who was a member of the communist party that governed the empire until 1991 when USSR was disbanded[22].

Bolshevism

Bolshevism referred to a social revolution when socialists reigned for more than a century. The social revolution was a transition of the Russian community to embrace socialism rather than capitalism[23]. The social revolution was aimed support workers and peasants farmers who were oppressed by the czarist government.

Social revolution was focused to terminate the tyrannical authority of the noble and to end the despair of exploitation which was experienced by Russian people. Furthermore, social revolution was intended to abolish history of slavery in any transition period such as wage slavery, chattel slavery and serfdom[24].

Different historical periods marked how the nobles who exploited workers. Nevertheless, several attempts had been made by the workers to end such inhumane acts[25]. However, each endeavor had been executed through bloodshed. Indeed, workers were becoming more aware of their rights hence had to assert their wishes.

The party of Bolsheviks was fundamental in the history of Russia in sense that restored Russia revolution that meant to promote peace to Russian citizens. Czarist government was overthrown due to demonstration led by popular masses. However, the bourgeois liberals never supported the need of revolution; however, when revolution was attained through establishment of provisional government, they angrily opposed it was a way to restore the practice of capitalism[26].

Conclusion

The Russians revolution happened in 1917 in the initial phase of the First World War. The Russian revolution was actually significant not only to the Russian empire but also to the entire history of the world.

The Russian revolution brought liberation and transformation in Russia; battle in Russian to an end. The revolution also led to the formation for Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) that replaced traditional monarchy system of governance in Russia. The former system leadership in Russia was oppressive; Russian people revolted against the rule of tyranny.

Indeed, this was what lead to Russian revolution; was a political democratic revolution that led to people’s liberation. Russian revolution took place in two distinct phases, the first phase happened in the month of February 1917 while the second phase took place in the month of October 1917. The new regime formed by Lenin Vladimir actually solidifies its leadership subsequent to three years of civil war that terminated in the 1920.

Though, the activities of the Russian revolution took place suddenly, their basis can be traced. Before the evolution, monarchical rule became gradually weaker because Russian people were displeased with such kinds of governance; it was oppressive and people were tired for being exploited. The revolution which was established by Lenin Vladimir marked a significant turning point in the empire; it influence international relations, social structure, economic, industrial development and cultural relations of the nation.

Bibliography

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Hamburg, G.M. “Cronies or Capitalists? The Russian Bourgeoisie and the Bourgeois Revolution from 1850 to 1917.” The Historian 73 (2011): 23-24.
Shevzov, Vera. Russian orthodox on the Eve of revolution. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.
Platt, Kevin. History in a Grotesque key: Russian Literatures and the Ideal of Revolution. Stanford: Stanford university press, 1997.
Adam, Bruce. Tiny revolutions in Russia; Twentieth Century Soviet and Russian History in Anecdotes. New York: RoutledgeCurzon, 2004.
Whisenhunt, William. “Teaching History,”A Journal of Methods 28 (2003): 56-60.
Vassilliev,Aleksandre., Bouis,Antinina., & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who Fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Slonim, Marc. From Chekhov to the Revolution: Rousing literatures, 1900-1917. New York: Oxford University Press, 1962.
Dukes, Paul. “Nikolai Sukhanov: Chronicle of the Russian Revolution.” Journal of European Studies 33 (2003): 90-98.
Rusnock, Andrea. “The Artist as Producer: Russian Constructivism in Revolution.” Canadian Journal of History 42 (2007): 2-6.
Mayer, Arno. The Furies: Violence and Terror in the French and Russian Revolutions. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.
Dukes, Paul. “Nikolai Sukhanov: Chronicle of the Russian Revolution.” Journal of European Studies 33( 2003): 90-98.
Slonim, Marc. From Chekhov to the Revolution: Rousing literatures, 1900-1917. New York: Oxford University Press, 1962.
Christmas, Mathew. “The Russian Revolution,” History Review (1999): 26-27.
Vassilliev, Aleksandre., Bouis Antinina., & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who Fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Vassilliev, Aleksandre., Bouis Antinina., & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Rusnock, Andrea. “The Artist as Producer: Russian Constructivism in Revolution.” Canadian Journal of History 42 (2007): 2-6.
Vassilliev Aleksandre, Bouis Antinina & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Adam, bruice. Tiny revolutions in Russia; Twentieth Century Soviet and Russian History in Anecdotes. New York: RoutledgeCurzon, 2004.
Vassilliev,Aleksandre., Bouis Antinina., & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Hamburg , G.M. “Cronies or Capitalists? The Russian Bourgeoisie and the Bourgeois Revolution from 1850 to 1917.” the Historian7 3 (2011).
Platt, Kevin. History in a Grotesque key: Russian Literatures and the Ideal of Revolution. Stanford: Stanford university press, 1997.
Vassilliev, Aleksandre., Bouis, Antinina., & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Shevzov, Vera. Russian orthodox on the eve of revolution. Oxford University Press. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.
Vassilliev Aleksandre, Bouis Antinina & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.
Shevzov Vera. Russian orthodox on the eve of revolution. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.
Vassilliev Aleksandre, Bouis Antinina & Kucharey Anya. Beauty in Exile; the Artists, Models and Nobility who fled the Russia Revolution and Influenced the World of Fashion. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2000.