Russian revolution of 1917 /Long term causes (long term causes…
Russian revolution of 1917 /Long term causes
long term causes
75% of Russians lived in villages
very poor, Until 1861 they had belonged to their masters, who could buy and sell them like cattle.
extreme poverty in rural areas
Leadership/ the tsar
the wealth of the higher class was favoured
There was a secret police force which spied on everyone.
Anyone who spoke up against the government could be shot, or sent to Siberia. Books and newspapers were censored. Sometimes the Tsar's secret police stirred people up to blame all their troubles on Jews, who were then attacked.
family matters made it hard for the tsar to be successfull
granted by the Tsar in the following way. From 1904 to 1905, Russia had fought a war against Japan. The Russians expected to win easily but in fact lost heavily. This defeat caused strikes and demonstrations in the Russian cities. For a few days in 1905, the Tsar nearly lost control of his country. He offered to call a Duma with free elections.
When the Duma met, it began to criticize the Tsar and demand more changes. He was not used to being criticized and did not like it. The Duma was dismissed, and elections for the next one were controlled by the Tsar.
Two facts became clear: first, no revolution would take place as long as the army stayed loyal to the Tsar; and second, the Tsar could not be trusted.
20% of Russians worked in cramped factories and lived in the city.
bad working and living conditions
Not all people of Russia were pro-tsar regime. They were split between the reformers and a smaller group of revolutionaries.
The reformers, or Liberals, wanted to modernize Russia gradually. They admired the parliamentary systems of Britain, France and the USA. They wanted free elections, more education for the people and no censorship.
The revolutionaries, on the other hand, wanted to throw out the whole tsarist system and build a different one.
that is, they believed in the ideas of Karl Marx, a nineteenth-century German writer who had once lived in London. Marx said:
1.All history is about struggles between different classes: for example, the middle class against the nobles, or the workers against the bosses.
2.The system in Europe is unfair because the factory owner (capitalist) makes a profit out of the workers (proletariat) who actually do the work.
3.In the end, there will be a violent revolution when the workers throw out the bosses and take over the country. The workers will then run the country for the benefit of all.
The Marxist revolutionaries could not say these things in Russia, of course. The Tsar's secret police would arrest them and send them to Siberia. Therefore the revolutionaries lived in exile in Western Europe.