Alexander Ii Success of Opposition

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How successfully did Alexander II deal with the opposition he faced, 1855-1881? Alexander II had opposition during the years 1855-1881 as his reforms had raised hope of the intelligentsia, who wanted further modernisation specifically a constitution and as he failed to deliver they were all disillusioned and angry. Secondly he abandoned his reforms in 1866 which led to more extreme opposition. I feel Alexander II was successful in dealing with opposition as he had support from the serfs which I feel was the most successful way to deal with opposition. The emancipation of the serfs appeared to have strengthened the loyalty of most peasants to the tsarist regime leading the peasants to greet the Populists with hostility due to their loyalty to the tsar. The serfs were hostile towards the populists as the serfs felt that populists did not understand their way of life through the involvement of ‘going to the people’ which was an idea from Lavrov in order to encourage peasants to rise up to revolution. The church taught the peasants to see Alexander as ‘little father’ which meant someone who was on their side. In my opinion Alexander II dealt with opposition very successfully between 1855-81 as he had the majority of the population against the Populists as serfs took up 80% of the population. Another way Alexander II successfully dealt with opposition was through censorship, he had utter control of media throughout Russia making it very difficult for opposition groups to spread their ideas and communicate with each other. Any opposition groups found acting on their beliefs had severe punishments, in Moscow and St Petersburg they were noticeably harsh. Opposition groups were usually found by the secret police as they acted effectively, the Black Partition in 1881 no longer existed as a separate group due to so many arrests from the secret police. This encouraged
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